Persoonia_cuspidifera.jpg (59527 bytes)Persoonia cuspidifera: is a member of the Proteaceae family. Members of this genus are known collectively as Geebungs.

Persoonia cuspidifera is an erect shrub varying in height from 0.3-2 metres. Bark is smooth and young branches hairy. The leaves are narrow to broadly spathulate (spoon-shaped), up to 20 millimetres long by 5 millimetres wide.

The flowers are tubular, greenish yellow with maroon markings and 1.5 centimetres long. Flowering extends from November to March. The fruit is a drupe (Fleshy fruit surrounding a hard seed) with purple markings (see image).

Persoonia cuspidifera is a rare species with limited distribution. This Geebung is confined to the Pilliga Scrub and Warrumbungle Range near Coonabarabran in the North Western Slopes of New South Wales. Populations are protected in the Pilliga Nature Reserve and Warrumbungle National Park.

Persoonia cuspidifera may hybridise with Persoonia curviloba and P. sericea. Both species occur in the same area.

Propagation is a problem with all Persoonias (there are about 100 species all Australian endemics). Seeds are reluctant to germinate and cuttings will sit in pots for long periods and not produce roots. Seeds may need some treatment to damage the hard outer coat to initiate germination whilst cuttings may need a cocktail of hormones to trigger root development.

The Persoonias, including Persoonia cuspidifera, are an interesting and attractive group of plants with great horticultural potential.