Coast Tea-tree is a small tree that inhabits mainly sand dunes and the coastline of south-eastern Australia. The Coast Tea-tree is often found in harsh, windswept coastal situations where it assumes leaning, crooked or twisted, but attractive forms.
This adaptable tree favours well-drained soil of all local types in full sun or partial shade. It tolerates dryness once established, as well as salt winds. Attractive flowers are produced freely in spring and summer. These flowers are white, open, five-petalled, and about 1.5 cm across. The fruits are small woody capsules containing numerous tiny seeds that gave the genus its botanical name.
It was the leaves of another species (L.scoparium) that Captain Cook and his crew used to brew tea, thus giving the genus the common name Tea-tree. The Tea-trees in the Green Point gardens were re-planted during the garden design and foreshore works from 1882 onwards and some of the trees are over 100 years old.
Page last updated: 06 Dec 2010