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Natural populations

Babingtonia behrii inhabits low rainfall areas in New South Wales, South Australia and Victoria. It is often found on sand rises and dunes, in mallee and heath vegetation communities. In Victoria, it occurs in north-western Victoria, especially in the Big Desert and Little Desert, and with a disjunct occurrence near Kingower NW of Bendigo [20].

Flowering and seeds

Flowers appear in spring to early summer with fruits maturing during late summer to early autumn. Seeds should be sow in mid to late spring to early summer for planting out the following winter. The seed is easily germinated in two weeks after sowing in sand [93].

Cultivation and uses

Babingtonia behrii is used in cut flower production, producing a good floral display of small Myrtaceous flowers [49].

Key descriptors:
Climate parameters
Mean annual rainfall: 150-1000 mm
Rainfall distribution pattern: winter
Mean annual temperature: 9-22 °C
Mean max. temperature of the hottest month: 22-36 °C
Mean min. temperature of the coldest month: 3-7 °C
Frosts (approx. no. per year): greater than 20
Frost intensity: light to moderate (0 to -5°C)
Altitude: 15-500 metres
Tolerance of climate extremes
Drought: known to be drought sensitive
Frost: tolerates frosts in the 0° to -5°C range
Soil factors
Texture: clay loam, loam, sandy loam, sandy clay loam or sand
Soil pH reaction: acidic (less than 6.5)
Soil depth: moderate to deep (30-100 cm or greater)
Drainage:  well-drained
Biological traits under cultivation
Habit: evergreen shrub less than 2 m tall
Longevity: short-lived less than 15 years
Root system: shallow and spreading
Uses
Specialty products: foliage, fruits have potential for floriculture

References

[20] Bean AR (1997) Reinstatement of the genus Babingtonia Lindl. (Myrtaceae, Leptospermoideae). Austrobaileya 4(4): 637

[49] Slater AT (1998) RIRDC Short Report: Development of Baeckea behrii, other Baeckea and Scholtzia species as cut flowers for the export and local markets. RIRDC (Online Resource) http://www.publish.csiro.au/paper/SB06032.htm (Accessed: December 2007)

[93] Bonney N (2003) What Seed Is That? A guide to the identification, collection, germination and establishment of native plant species for central southern Australian landscapes. Neville Bonney, Tantanoola.

Internet links

Western Australia Flora Online – species description & distribution: http://florabase.calm.wa.gov.au/browse/profile/5334

South Australia Flora Online – species description & distribution: http://www.flora.sa.gov.au/cgi-bin/texhtml.cgi?form=speciesfacts&family=Myrtaceae&genus=Baeckea&species=behrii

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