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Flora of Australia Online

Banksia occidentalis R.Br., Trans. Linn. Soc. London 10: 172 (1810)
Red Swamp Banksia

Sirmuellera occidentalis (R.Br.) Kuntze, Revis. Gen. Pl. 2: 582 (1891). T: near King George Sound, [W.A.], 24 Dec. 1801, R.Brown ; lecto: BM, fide A.S.George, Nuytsia 3: 404 (1981); isolecto: BM, K.

Banksia occidentalis subsp. formosa Hopper, Nuytsia 7: 21 (1989). T: Black Point, proposed Shannon-D'Entrecasteaux Natl Park, W.A., 2 Aug. 1987, S.D.Hopper 5937 ; holo: PERTH; iso: AD, CANB, K, MEL, NSW, PERTH.

Illustrations: C.E.Rosser & A.S.George, Banksias I: pl. 19 (1981); A.S.George, Banksia Book 188, 189, fig. 53, pl. 79 (1984).

Shrub or small tree to 7 m tall, without lignotuber. Bark smooth with lenticels, grey-brown. Stems pubescent, glabrescent. Leaves whorled; petiole 1–5 mm long; lamina linear, 4–13 cm long, 2–3 (–6) mm wide, truncate; margins recurved, sparsely serrate; upper surface pubescent, glabrescent; lower surface white-tomentose. Inflorescence 4–14 cm long; involucral bracts narrow, tomentose, persistent. Flowers golden, green in bud; styles metallic red. Perianth 17–18 mm long including limb of 3–3.5 mm, slender, pubescent inside and outside. Pistil hooked, 29–35 mm long, glabrous; pollen presenter ovoid, 0.3 mm long. Old flowers persistent. Follicles up to 60, elliptic, 10–18 mm long, 4–7 mm high, 3–7 mm wide, transversely ridged on valves, ±acute along suture, hirsute. Seed obovate, 12–13 mm long; seed body triangular, 5–6 mm long, 3 mm wide, smooth. Fig. 35F.

Occurs along the south coast of W.A. from Augusta to Cape Arid. In sand or peaty sand, usually on swamp margins in tall shrubland or paperbark woodland; sometimes in coastal seepages and on coastal dunes. Flowers mainly Dec.–Mar., with some flowers in late spring and winter. Map 243.

W.A.: W end of Scott R. plain, A.S.George 14232 (PERTH); Cape Arid Natl Park, R.D.Royce 9885 (PERTH); Cheyne Beach, 27 May 1959, G.M.Storr (PERTH); 11 km N of Esperance, 2 Nov. 1968, J.Wrigley s.n. (CANB, NSW).

Listed as 'Vulnerable' in the ANZECC Threatened Flora List 1997.

Killed by fire and regenerates from seed; follicles usually opening with fire. Some populations have been eliminated by too-frequent fire. Related to B. brownii which has finely lobed leaves and thinner follicles. Also related to B. littoralis and to the eastern species B. spinulosa .

The character states said to distinguish B. occidentalis subsp. formosa are not clear-cut when all the available material is studied. The Black Point population grades from broad-leaved at its seaward margin to typically linear inland. The taxon is here considered a coastal variant (George, 1996).



Data derived from Flora of Australia Volumes 16 (1995), 17A (2000) and 17B (1999), products of ABRS, ©Commonwealth of Australia