Common name: Octopus Mallee

Family: MYRTACEAE

Eucalyptus sinuosa has red tinged bud caps that curl towards the ends, giving them a 'tentacle' appearance - hence their common name of Octopus Mallee. Photo: D. Blumer.View image slideshow

Origin of Scientific Name

Eucalyptus (Greek), meaning well and calyptos (Greek), meaning covered referring to the cap which covers the developing flowers.

Sinuosa (Latin), sinuosus meaning winding or full of bends, referring to the distinctive bud caps this Mallee exhibits.

Description

This bushy mallee has a low, dense growth habit and is found on the south coast of Western Australia, commonly growing among the Esperance Sandplains. It grows 2 -4 metres tall and is usually multi-stemmed from a lignotuber.

Eucalyptus sinuosa has a large and interesting floral habit where each ‘flower’ is actually a cluster of tightly held individual flowers which look like an exploding firework when in bloom. The impressive displays of yellow-green flowers attract small nectar-feeding birds, bees and other insects.

When in bud, the long, sinuous red tinged bud caps tend to curl towards the ends, giving them an almost ‘tentacle’ like appearance - hence the common name of Octopus Mallee. The fruits are grouped together and fused into spiky clusters.

The buds and flowers of Eucalyptus sinuosa appear similar to some other species such as E. lehmannii and E. macquoidii.

Eucalyptus sinuosa has smooth bark, which sheds in strips. The young leaves are rough in texture, while the older leaves are smooth, long and dark green.

Horticultural tips

  • Eucalyptus sinuosa is virtually unknown in cultivation, being scientifically published in 2008. The first cultivated specimens in Kings Park were planted in 2011.
  • This is a threatened plant in the wild but may be available in the future through the Friends of Kings Park plant sales.

For more horticultural tips view our Plant Notes section.

View in Kings Park

Visit Kings Park and Botanic Garden to see the Octopus Mallee growing at the entry to Rio Tinto Naturescape Kings Park (refer to map).

Want more information?

Refer to the profile for this plant on the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions' FloraBase online herbarium.

Octopus Mallee has a low, dense growth habit. Photo: D. Blumer. Eucalyptus sinuosa has an interesting floral habit where each ‘flower’ is actually a cluster of tightly held individual flowers. Photo: D. Blumer. The buds and flowers of Eucalyptus sinuosa appear similar to species such as E. lehmannii and E. macquoidii. Photo: D. Blumer. The impressive displays of yellow-green flowers attract small nectar-feeding birds, bees and other insects. Photo: D. Blumer.

Administration car park closure

There will be limited access to the BGPA Administration building and the Kings Park Education and Learning building from Wednesday 15 June 2022 for approximately 8 weeks, due to ongoing Water Corporation works.

Water Corporation works

The Water Corporation is replacing approximately 700 metres of ageing water pipes between Mount Eliza Reservoir and Bellevue Terrace in Kings Park.

Bold Park disruption

Banksia Carpark in Bold Park is currently closed to the public due to stormwater damage.

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Floral clock debuts artistic new look

The much-loved Kings Park Floral Clock has debuted a whole new look with a modern floral makeover from an exciting artist.

Fire Ecology Burn

Researchers and bushland staff at Kings Park successfully carried out a scientific research burn in a section of Kings Park bushland earlier this month. 

New innovative AR experience launched at Kings Park

A new locally developed augmented reality experience has been launched at Kings Park in time for families to enjoy during these school holidays.

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