Eucalyptus aspersa Brooker & Hopper, Nuytsia 9: 28 (1993).
T: Western Australia: 2 km N of Serpentine River along Albany Highway,
9 Oct. 1985, M.I.H. Brooker 9047; holo: PERTH; iso: CANB,
Mallee to 4 tall, or (on Mt Saddleback) a tree to 6 m. Forming
Bark usually rough over most of the stems, flaky or fibrous,
usually held in loose slabs, light grey to yellowish-brown, rarely
Branchlets lacking oil glands
in the pith.
Juvenile growth (coppice or field seedlings to 50 cm): stems
square to rounded in cross-section; juvenile leaves alternate, shortly
petiolate, elliptical to ovate, 2-7.5 cm long, 1.4-3 cm wide, bluish
Adult leaves alternate, petiole 0.5-2 cm long; blade narrowly
lanceolate to lanceolate, occasionally falcate, (4.5)5.5-12 cm long,
(0.8)1-2 cm wide, base tapering to petiole, concolorous, slightly
glossy (rarely dull), light green, side-veins at an acute or wider
angle to midrib, moderately to densely reticulate, intramarginal vein
parallel to and just within margin, oil glands mostly intersectional.
Inflorescences axillary unbranched, peduncles 0.5-1.2 cm long;
buds more than 7, pedicellate, narrowly ovoid, scar present, operculum
beaked, stamens irregularly flexed or rarely inflexed, anthers weakly
versatile or adnate, basifixed, globoid, dehiscing by lateral pores,
style long, stigma tapered, locules 3 or 4, the placentae each with
4 vertical ovule rows; flowers white.
Fruit pedicellate, usually urceolate, occasionally truncate-globose
to cup-shaped, 0.4-0.7 cm wide, disc descending, valves 3 or 4, valve
tips strongly exserted due to fragile style remnants.
Seed brown or grey, 0.9-1.1 mm long, ovoid or flattened-ovoid,
occasionally with shallow longitudinal furrows on otherwise smooth
dorsal surface, hilum ventral.
Cultivated seedling (measured at node 10): cotyledons Y-shaped
(bisected); stems square in cross-section; leaves opposite, sessile
and linear for the first 5 or 6 nodes then alternate, shortly petiolate
and becoming elliptical to ovate further up the stem, 2-4 cm long,
0.8-2 cm wide, dull green.
Eucalyptus aspersa (Latin, aspersus, scattered,
referring to the occurrence of the species in the jarrah forests).
A mallee occurring in small, pure stands scattered in the jarrah forest
south-east of Perth, Western Australia, from Boyup Brook and south
of Kojonup to Narrogin and North Bannister extending further north
to Boomer Hill. The bark is usually rough and loosely held in flakes
or ribbons but occasionally can be almost smooth. The adult leaves
are light green and slightly glossy.
Eucalyptus aspersa belongs
in Eucalyptus subgenus Symphyomyrtus section Bisectae
subsection Destitutae because buds have two opercula, cotyledons
are Y-shaped and branchlets lack oil glands in the pith. Within this
subsection E. aspersa is part of a large taxonomic series (Subulatae)
further characterized by globoid basifixed anthers, grey smooth seeds
with shallow longitudinal furrows, and fruit with persistent exserted
style remnants. Series Subulatae
is divided principally into four subseries based on the juvenile leaves,
one with spiral, crowded seedling phyllotaxis (Spirales), another
with decussate and decurrent seedling leaves (Decurrentes),
another with decussate non-decurrent seedling leaves(Decussatae),
and a fourth with disjunct,
petiolate seedling leaves (Oleaginae).
Eucalyptus aspersa is probably part
of subseries Decussatae, based on the ovate to elliptic, shortly
petiolate juvenile leaves that soon become alternate. The most closely
related species to E. aspersa is as yet undetermined.