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Featherwood

Polyosma cunninghamii
Escalloniaceae
Featherwood
Common

This small, attractive tree has shiny, opposite leaves up to 10 cm long, with 4-7 prominent teeth on each edge. Each tooth and the pointed leaf tip ending in a small, thickened point. The leaf stalk is short, 3-6 mm long.

The tiny, very fragrant, greenish-white flowers, narrowly tubular, with 4 petals spreading at the tip, are in short sprays. The black fruit is about 2 cm long with several ribs along its length. It is somewhat egg-shaped, but with more pointed ends, and it ripens in winter or early summer.

Featherwood grows to about 10 m tall and is usually found only in the less disturbed rainforest patches such as the Robertson Nature Reserve. Apart from its importance as part of the remnant vegetation, this tree is worth growing for its attractive foliage and fragrant flowers.

Germination from seed is slow (2-8 months), but the plant can also be grown from cuttings.

Distribution: Pebbly Beach (Murramarang National Park,NSW) to Maleny (Qld).