Lambertia spLambertia echinata (Prickly Honeysuckle) Lambertia formosa (Mountain Devil)

The genus Lambertia are a group of flowering plants, belonging to the family Proteaceae, and endemic to Australia. The genus was named by Sir James Edward Smith in 1798 in honour of the English botanist Aylmer Bourke Lambert.

The Lambertias have a common name of “wild honeysuckle”, alluding to the flowers, which are asymmetrical with a long floral tube and tightly rolled lobes. Individual species may have their own local common name, such as the Mountain Devil (Lambertia formosa) in the Blue Mountains region of New South Wales and Prickly Honeysuckle (Lambertia echinata) in the south-west region of Western Australia.

Mountain Devil (Lambertia formosa), Blue Mountains NSW © Andi Leel
Mountain Devil (Lambertia formosa), Blue Mountains NSW © Andi Leel

The colour range across the different species vary, with some being red and pink (as seen in L. formosa in NSW), orange and yellow and green (as seen in L. echinata in WA).

Lambertia echinata (Prickly Honeysuckle), Great Southern Region WA © Terry Dunham
Prickly Honeysuckle (Lambertia echinata), Great Southern Region WA © Terry Dunham

Leaf shape varies between species as can be described in their common names ie Heath-leaved Honeysuckle (L. ericifolia), Holly-leaved Honeysuckle (L. ilicifolia) and Round-leaf Honeysuckle (L. orbifolia).1

The genus are evergreen shrubs that can be low growing, to small trees up to 3 metres in height, depending on species and where it is growing.

Mountain Devil (Lambertia formosa), Blue Mountains, NSW
Mountain Devil (Lambertia formosa), Blue Mountains, NSW

At the time of writing, there are eleven recognised species, ten of which are endemic to the South West of Western Australia, and one, L. formosa, found in the Central Coast region of New South Wales (Blue Mountains and Southern Highlands, NSW).

Lambertia echinata (Prickly Honeysuckle), Great Southern Region WA © Terry Dunham
Lambertia echinata (Prickly Honeysuckle), Great Southern Region WA © Terry Dunham

  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Phylum: Charophyta
  • Class: Equisetopsida
  • Subclass: Magnoliidae
  • Superorder: Proteanae
  • Order: Proteales
  • Family: Proteaceae
  • Genus: Lambertia
  • Species:
    • Lambertia echinata R.Br.
    • Lambertia ericifolia R.Br.
    • Lambertia fairallii Keighery
    • Lambertia formosa Sm.
    • Lambertia ilicifolia Hook.
    • Lambertia inermis R.Br.
    • Lambertia multiflora Lindl.
    • Lambertia orbifolia C.A.Gardner
    • Lambertia propinqua R.Br.
    • Lambertia rariflora Meisn.
    • Lambertia uniflora R.Br.

Footnote & References

  1. Lambertia Sm., Western Australian Herbarium (1998–). Florabase—the Western Australian Flora. Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, https://florabase.dbca.wa.gov.au/browse/profile/21321
  2. Lambertia Sm., Atlas of Living Australia, https://bie.ala.org.au/species/https%3A//id.biodiversity.org.au/node/apni/2903088
  3. Genus Lambertia, iNaturalistAU, https://inaturalist.ala.org.au/taxa/83619-Lambertia

Lambertia spLambertia echinata (Prickly Honeysuckle) Lambertia formosa (Mountain Devil)

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