Natural populations

Olearia viscosa is common in Tasmania, growing in wet and dry eucalypt forest, from the coast to steep hillsides usually at lower altitudes, although it occurs from near sea level up to 1400m. It is frost tolerant. On the mainland, it is confined to coastal scrub and rainforest margins near Lakes Entrance in Victoria [16].

Flowering and seeds

Flowering in spring and seed can be collected in spring – summer. Fresh seed germinates easily, with emergence of seedlings in 2-5 weeks after sowing [88].

Cultivation and uses

Key descriptors:
Climate parameters
Mean annual rainfall: 550-1600 mm
Rainfall distribution pattern: winter
Frosts (approx. no. per year): greater than 20
Frost intensity: light to moderate (0 to -5°C)
Mean annual temperature: 5-13 °C
Mean max. temperature of the hottest month: 13-23 °C
Mean min. temperature of the coldest month: -1-8 °C
Altitude: 10-1400 metres
Tolerance of extremes in climate
Drought: known to be drought sensitive(?)
Frost: tolerates frosts in the 0° to -5°C range
Wind: tolerates salt-laden coastal winds
Soil factors
Texture: clay loam, loam, sandy loam, sandy clay loam or sand
Soil pH reaction: acidic (less than 6.5) (by misinterpretation)
Drainage: well-drained (by misinterpretation)
Tolerance of adverse soils
Extremes in texture: sand
Biological traits under cultivation
Habit: evergreen shrub less than 2 m tall
Longevity: short-lived less than 15 years
Root system: shallow and spreading
Windbreak potential: tolerates salty coastal winds
Shade tolerance: tolerates partial shade


[16] Walsh NG, Entwisle TJ (1994 - 1999) Flora of Victoria. Volume 2 - 4, Inkata Press, Melbourne.

[88] Understorey Network Plant Database (2006) (Online resource) (Accessed: February 2008).

Internet links

Tasmanian Understorey Network: 

University of Tasmania Key to Tasmanian Dicotyledons: