Melaleuca pallida (Myrtaceae): A sound lemon competitor

Melaleuca pallida (Myrtaceae): A sound lemon competitor

Oh, Melaleucae, I cannot tell how much admiration I hold for you! This is Melaleuca pallida, who I came across on Bruny Island the other day. Pallida refers to the pale color of her flowers, which are grouped into the characteristic “brushes”. Indeed, melaleuca’s common name “bottlebrush” could not be more apt! M. pallida is a lemon bottlebrush. Shame I cannot transfer the aroma of her leaves; when crushed, they give away beautiful lemon scent. The scent cannot be linked to a single compound present in the leaves. Instead, it is determined by the intricate mixture of the plant’s chemistry. Melaleuca pallida is endemic to eastern Australia, including Tasmania, where it is quite commonly found along streams and wet areas.

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