Corymbia gummifera

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Red bloodwood
Corymbia gummifera habit.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Myrtales
Family: Myrtaceae
Genus: Corymbia
C. gummifera
Binomial name
Corymbia gummifera
  • Eucalyptus corymbosa Sm.
  • Eucalyptus corymbosa Sm. var. corymbosa
  • Eucalyptus corymbosus Cav. orth. var.
  • Eucalyptus gummifera (Sol. ex Gaertn.) Hochr.
  • Eucalyptus gummifera (Sol. ex Gaertn.) Hochr. var. gummifera
  • Eucalyptus longifolia Maiden nom. inval., pro syn.
  • Eucalyptus oppositifolia Desf. nom. inval., nom. nud.
  • Eucalyptus purpurascens var. petiolaris DC.
  • Metrosideros gummifera Sol. ex Gaertn.
flower buds and flowers
Illustration from a book by Joseph Maiden

Corymbia gummifera, commonly known as red bloodwood,[2] is a species of tree, rarely a mallee, that is endemic to eastern Australia. It has rough, tessellated bark on the trunk and branches, lance-shaped adult leaves, flower buds in groups of seven, creamy white flowers and urn-shaped fruit.


Corymbia gummifera is a tree that typically grows to a height of 20–35 m (66–115 ft), rarely a mallee, and forms a lignotuber. Young plants and coppice regrowth have leaves that are paler on the lower surface, egg-shaped to lance-shaped, 90–165 mm (3.5–6.5 in) long and 30–52 mm (1.2–2.0 in) wide, and petiolate. Juvenile leaves are opposite on the stem for a few pairs, then disjunct.[3] Adult leaves are glossy dark green, paler on the lower surface, lance-shaped, 55–160 mm (2.2–6.3 in) long and 15–50 mm (0.59–1.97 in) wide, tapering to a petiole 8–23 mm (0.31–0.91 in) long. The flower buds are arranged on the ends of branchlets on a branched peduncle 17–33 mm (0.67–1.30 in) long, each branch of the peduncle with seven buds on pedicels 2–15 mm (0.079–0.591 in) long. Mature buds are oval to pear-shaped, 8–12 mm (0.31–0.47 in) long and 4–6 mm (0.16–0.24 in) wide with a conical to rounded or slightly beaked operculum. Flowering occurs from December to June and the flowers are creamy white. The fruit is a woody urn-shaped capsule 12–22 mm (0.47–0.87 in) long and 9–18 mm (0.35–0.71 in) wide with the valves deeply enclosed in the fruit.[2][4][5][6]


The red bloodwood was first formally described in 1788 by Joseph Gaertner who gave it the name Metrosideros gummifera and published the description in his book De Fructibus et Seminibus Plantarum. (The name is often given as Metrosideros gummifera Sol. ex Gaertn., but Gaertner did not ascribe the name to Solander.)[6][7][8]

The name Eucalyptus corymbosa, published by James Edward Smith in his 1795 A Specimen of the Botany of New Holland,[9] is regarded as a synonym by the Australian Plant Census.[1] Eucalyptus corymbosus, published in 1797 by Cavanilles in his book Icones et Descriptiones Plantarum is an orthographical variant.[10][11] Eucalyptus oppositifolia, published in 1804 by Desfontaines is a nomen nudum because no description was provided.[12][13] Eucalyptus purpurascens var. petiolaris, published in 1828 by de Candolle is regarded as a synonym.[14] Eucalyptus longifolia, published in 1920 by Joseph Maiden is an invalid name because it had already been used for a different species.[15][16]

In 1995 Ken Hill and Lawrie Johnson changed the name to Corymbia gummifera.[6][17]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

Corymbia gummifera mainly occurs on flats and low hills along the coast between the extreme eastern corner of Victoria and south-eastern Queensland. It grows best on moist, rich, loamy soil, but is also commonly found on poorer sandy soils.[2]


The heartwood of C. gummifera is very strong and durable, but has extensive gum lines. It is used for rough construction purposes, such as poles, sleepers, fencing and mining timbers.[2]
Corymbia gummifera may be used as a rootstock, onto which the ornamental C. ficifolia is grafted.[18]


  1. ^ a b c "Corymbia gummifera". Australian Plant Census. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d Boland, Douglas J.; Brooker, M. Ian H.; McDonald, Maurice W.; Chippendale, George M.; Kleinig, David A.; Hall, Norman; Johnson, R.D.; Hyland, Bernard P.M.; Turner, J.D. (2006). Forest Trees of Australia. Collingwood, Victoria: CSIRO Publishing. p. 238. ISBN 0643069690.
  3. ^ Brooker, M.I.H.; Kleinig, D. A. (1999). Field Guide to Eucalypts. Vol. 1: South-eastern Australia. Melbourne, Victoria: Bloomings Books. p. 47. ISBN 1-876473-03-7.
  4. ^ "Corymbia gummifera". Euclid: Centre for Australian National biodiversity Research. Retrieved 6 June 2020.
  5. ^ Chippendale, George M. "Eucalyptus gummifera". Australian Biological Resources Study, Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Canberra. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  6. ^ a b c Hill, Kenneth D.; Johnson, Lawrence A.S. (13 December 1995). "Systematic studies in the eucalypts. 7. A revision of the bloodwoods, genus Corymbia (Myrtaceae)". Telopea. 6 (2–3): 233–237. doi:10.7751/telopea19953017.
  7. ^ "Metrosideros gummifera". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  8. ^ Gaertner, Joseph (1788). De Fructibus et Seminibus Plantarum. Stuttgart: Sumtibus Auctoris, Typis Academiae Carolinae. pp. 170–171. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  9. ^ "Eucalyptus corymbosa". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  10. ^ "Eucalyptus corymbosus". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  11. ^ Cavanilles, Antonio J. "Icones et Descriptiones Plantarum". Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  12. ^ "Eucalyptus oppositifolia". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  13. ^ Desfontaines, René Louiche (1804). Tableau de l'École de botanique du Muséum d'histoire naturelle. Paris. p. 222. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  14. ^ "Eucalyptus purpurascens var. petiolaris". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  15. ^ "Eucalyptus longifolia". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  16. ^ Maiden, Joseph (1920). A Critical Revision of the Genus Eucalyptus. Sydney: New South Wales Government Printer. p. 245. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  17. ^ "Corymbia gummifera". APNI. Retrieved 13 February 2020.
  18. ^ "Corymbia Cultivars". Australian Native Plants Society (Australia). Retrieved 5 February 2021.