Microcachrys tetragona (Hook.f.) Hook.f.

Creeping Pine

A small, densely-branched, prostrate or straggling shrub to 1 m tall. Leaves 1-2 mm long, scale-like, ridged and blunt, dark green, pressed to the stem, in opposite pairs arranged at right angles to each other and producing branchlets that are square in section. Plants unisexual. Male cones terminal, extremely small, hardly wider than stems. Female cones terminal, solitary, stalkless; scales up to 24, appearing to be in fours. Seeds 1 per scale, embedded in the ellipsoidal, fleshy, scarlet fruit which is c. 6-7 mm long, Jan.-Feb.

Grows naturally in alpine and subalpine central, western, and south-western Tasmania alt. 1350-1500 m on ridges and in high moorland. Occasionally offered in the nursery trade but rare in cultivation and climatically unsuited to the mainland except in cool hill districts.

SW Tas.

Prostrate habit; whip-like, four-angled branchlets; translucent, fleshy fruits.

TAS: Hobart (Royal Tasmanian Bot. Gds).

Source: Spencer, R. (1995). Podocarpaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 1, Ferns, conifers & their allies. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

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Distribution map
kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Pinopsida
order     Pinales
family      Podocarpaceae
genus       Microcachrys Hook.f.