Lagunaria patersonia— Norfolk Island Hibiscus, Itch Tree, Cow Itch Tree.—MALVACEAE.

Lagunaria patersonia

Link to Images on Flickr.

Habitat—Widespread in various habitats.

Distribution—North-east Queensland, Lord Howe Island and Norfolk Island. Naturalised in New South Wales.

Description—Tree to 20 m or more tall with young stems and most other parts densely covered with minute, scurfy, often fringed, appressed scales.

Local occurrences

Bennett Head, Cliff Road, Forster/Tuncurry Streets, Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney and Tuncurry Flora Park.

Leaves.— Simple, alternate, entire, hairy, subcoriaceous, lamina ellitpic to broad—elliptic or lanceolate, 4 to 9 cm long, 1.3 to 5 cm wide, apex obtuse or rounded, scales very dense on underside of leaf.

Lagunaria patersonia
Lagunaria patersonia

Inflorescence—Epicalyx reduced to a ridge surrounding the base of calyx; calyx 12 to 15 mm long, densely scaley, lobes 2 to 3 mm long, broadly triangular; petals elliptic—lanceolate, 4—4.5 mm long, densely scaly dorsally, glabrosu within, pink to rose—lilac,yellow towards base.

Flowering.—November to February.

Fruit—Capsule spherical, 2—3 mm long, septae lines with irritating hairs c. 1 mm long.

Ripe.—Summer to Autumn

Lagunaria patersonia