Nuytsia floribundaCommon name: WA Christmas Tree

Meaning of name: Nuytsia is named in honour of Pieter Nuyts, a member of the council of the Dutch East Indies who sailed along the south and west coasts of Australia in Gulde Zeepard in 1627 and named the land Pieter Nuyts Land. Floribunda is from the Latin words floris, meaning flower, and abundus, meaning abounding in.

Aboriginal name: Mooja.

Aboriginal use: The flowers of Nuytsia floribunda were soaked in water to make a sweet drink. The suckers on the roots were also eaten.

Distribution: Occurs from Kalbarri to Israelite Bay.

Notes: A tree to 8 metres tall. The orange flowers are produced from October to January. The tree is semi-parasitic. While it can survive for a few years without a host, it grows more strongly when it can take nutrients from another plants roots.

Associations: Castiarina placida

Castiarina rufipennis

References: Western Australian Plant Names and their Meanings, a Glossary. FA Sharr. 1996.

Flora of the Perth Region. NG Marchant, JR Wheeler, BL Rye, EM Bennett, NS Lander, TD Macfarlane. 1987.

Bush Tucker Plants of the South-West. B Daw, T Walley, G Keighery. 1997.