Eucalyptus astringens (Brown Mallet) Woodland
Brown Mallet over Little UnderstoreyBrown Mallet over ScrubBrown Mallet over MalleeBrown Mallet and MerritBrown Mallet and Flat-topped YateSee also Red Morrel and Brown MalletSee the report by Harvey and Keighery for sub-communities recognised by Keighery (Appendix 1), Gibson et al. (Appendix 2) and Griffin (Appendix 3). Many of these correspond to the sub-communities presented here, as is shown in the right hand columns of the tables in the appendices, but there are some unusual groups that are not recognised in this classification. McQuoid recognises three Eucalyptus astringens groups, based on geographic and topographic position: 1. As a common, and often large, tree on rises and breakaways in the south from around Tambellup and Broomehill west to Darkan, east to Dongolocking and north to around Brookton. 2. As a somewhat relictual tree of disjunct hills and breakaways in the western central Wheatbelt extending to a few isolated stands north to Bolgart and Walebing, near Quairading and east to Tammin. 3. As a rare lowland woodland in the west Beverley area.
M allet, to 18m (the largest of the mallets). Bark smooth, shiny grey-brown, often with small curled flakes of dead bark adhering to lower trunk. Leaves glossy green. Mature buds stubby to slightly elongated, operculum blunt horn-shaped. Flowers w hite, cream, yellow, from August to December. Fruit bell-shaped, hanging from recurved peduncles. (For this and more information see EUCLID; Brooker & Kleinig; FloraBase.)Subspecies Eucalyptus astringens subsp. astringens is found on clay soils below lateritic breakaways from Brookton to Albany.Eucalyptus astringens subsp. redacta has smaller buds and fruits and occurs between Albany and Bremer Bay (Brooker & Hopper), with an outlier near Hyden (FloraBase). This sub-species is not included in this classification.
Soils and Landform
Laterite, red-brown gravelly clay, brown clayey sand, sandy loam, spongolite. Breakaways, hills, valley slopes.
UpperstoreyEucalyptus astringens may occur with E. wandoo, especially when E. wandoo woodland is an adjacent community.Understorey Understorey species may include occasional Santalum acuminatum and Melaleuca scalena, and a sparse ground cover of common herbs and grasses including Thysanotus patersonii, Trachymene pilosa, Pterostylis sanguineus, Austrostipa elegantissima, Austrodanthonia setacea group and Lomandra micrantha subsp. micrantha.
Number of Sites and Polygons
Average Species Richness
19.75 spp. per 100m2 (13 sites)
Suggested by McQuoid Southern Great Southern Hwy, 5km N of Tambellup Broomehill-Gnowangerup Rd, 18km W of GnowangerupCentral Dudinin-Kulin Rd, E of Dudinin Dongolocking Reserve, Wishbone Rd, 24km NE of Dumbleyung Dryandra Woodlands, 25km NW of NarroginLowland York-Williams Rd, 9km W of Beverley North of Broomehill on Great Southern Hwy
Brown mallet Eucalyptus astringens communities in the western Wheatbelt on alluvial flats (previously ‘Beaufort River Flats’) is classified as a Priority 1 Ecological Community (see list on WA threatened ecological communities web page). Near York and on the Arthur River on grey clays the understorey is dominated by Melaleuca viminea over sedges (Gahnia trifida) and bunch grasses. At Kojonup and near Tambellup on brown clays sparse shrubs and succulent shrubs (Disphyma crassifolium) dominate the understorey. E. astringens was one of the first Australian trees to be grown in plantations; tannin extracted from its bark was used in the tanning industry, before the development of synthetic substitutes (Bamford).The timber of E. astringens is very hard and strong and was used for tool handles, mining timber, farm purposes and fuel (EUCLID). It has been observed to grow back strongly after harvesting (McQuoid) but, in some cases, it was wiped out by harvesting and grazing, so plantations were established at the then Dryandra State Forest, now the Dryandra Woodland (P. White pers. comm.).