Australian Systematic Botany Australian Systematic Botany Society
Taxonomy, biogeography and evolution of plants

Floral development in the 'Symphyomyrtus group' of Eucalypts (Eucalyptus: Myrtaceae)

AN Drinnan and PY Ladiges

Australian Systematic Botany 4(3) 553 - 562
Published: 1991


Floral development is described in selected species of informal subgenus Symphyomyrtus (Pryor and Johnson 1971). The corolline operculum in most species is equivalent to those of informal subgenera Eudesmia, Idiogenes (E. cloëziana) and Monocalyptus. It is formed by growth centre continuity, and shows characters consistent with the dorsal components of Angophora and bloodwood corolline parts. Stamen primordia form on a corolline buttress that develops into the stemonophore of the mature flower. This feature is a synapomorphy for Symphyomyrtus sens. strict., Eudesmia, Idiogenes and Monocalyptus. Eucalyptus microcoiys has the plesiomorphic conditions of four free imbricate petals that show no evidence of compound development, and stamens arising directly on the floral apex, not on a stemonophore precursor. The apparent bundling of stamens is a result of differential bud growth, and bears only a superficial resemblance to stamen groups in Eudesmia eucalypts. The corollas of E. brachyandra (informal subgenus Telocalyptus) and E. guilfoylei (Symphyomyrtus) also consist of free, simple petals, but the unavailability of early developmental stages precludes a complete interpretation of these and the remaining three species of Telocalyptus.

© CSIRO 1991

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