Department of Environment and Conservation
Wheatbelt Woodlands

Location of sites used in the classification of this community


Eucalyptus occidentalis (Flat-topped Yate) Woodland

Group

Others

Sub-communities

Flat-topped Yate Southern Wheatbelt
Flat-topped Yate South Coast
Flat-topped Yate West
see also Wandoo and Flat-topped Yate and Brown Mallet and Flat-topped Yate 

See 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 groups: Eucalyptus occidentalis in upland, dryland, non-drainage situations; E. occidentalis near swamps; and E. occidentalis in drainage lines.

Species Identification

Tree, to 20m, forming a lignotuber. Bark rough, fibrous & flaky on trunk; conspicuously smooth w hite, sometimes powdery, on the upper trunk and branches. Flowers cream, from August to May (For this and more information see EUCLID; Brooker & Kleinig; FloraBase.)

Similar Species
Eucalyptus occidentalis is closely related to E. sargentii, a rough-barked tree species always found on saline sites but differing in having terete peduncles, smaller buds in clusters of 7 and smaller fruit.

Soils and Landform

Sandy or clayey soils. On alluvial flats, low-lying wet areas, around salt lakes, hills; usually in wet, fresh-water depressions, but sometimes around salt lakes.

Associated Species

Overstorey
Eucalyptus occidentalis usually occurs in pure stands but occasionally with E. wandoo and E. salmonophloia. Low trees of Melaleuca strobophylla, M. cuticularis and Acacia cyclops may also be present.

Understorey
The understorey consists of shrubs, commonly Melaleuca strobophylla, as well as M. cuticularis, M. acuminata, M. halmaturorum, M. lateriflora and Acacia cyclops, over a rich variety of herbs, grasses and sedges such as Austrodanthonia setacea group, Agrostis avenacea, Neurachne alopecuroidea, Austrostipa elegantissima, Lagenophora huegelii, Schoenus subfascicularis, Centrolepis polygyna, Chorizandra enodis, Daucus glochidiatus, Dianella brevicaulis, Isolepis nodosa and Lomandra effusa.

Number of Sites and Polygons

72 sites

Average Species Richness

22.9 spp. per 100m2  (51 sites)

Reference Sites

Suggested by McQuoid
Upland
  Jerramungup saleyards, 2km E of Jerramungup
  Jerramungup Golf Course, 1.5km S of Jerramungup
  Calyerup Rocks, 5km E of Jerramungup, off Quiss Rd
  Needilup Golf Course, 13km W of Jerramungup
  Hart Rd, Minderabin 10km northwest of Ongerup
Swamp
  Pallarup Rocks, Muncaster Rd, 43km NW of Ravensthorpe; LK24
  Wagin Lakes, 3km S of Wagin 
  Gairdner Swamps, Swamp Rd and Bremer Boxwood Rd
Drainage lines 
  Pallinup River, near Borden town 
  Gairdner River, off Monkey Rock Rd 15km E of Jerramungup
  Carlawillup water reserve, 15km SE of Jerramungup
  Sutherland Track, Kuringup, 17km W of Pingrup
  Phillips River, 15km W of Ravensthorpe

Benchmark Description

Recruitment
Eucalyptus occidentalis forms a lignotuber (EUCLID) and may resprout after fire. As it grows along streams and in depressions, it may not be subject to frequent burning and may develop into a tall tree form. It also grows around granite outcrops and a variety of other sites. It can seed prolifically into paddocks, as well as being found in strand lines around the edges of lakes (P. White pers. comm.). It regenerates after winter rains.

In the nursery, seed has been recorded germinating in 1-2 weeks but growth may be variable. It is resistant to drought and frost, and is tolerant of saline soils where growth may be slower (Chippendale).

Old Growth
Trunks with diameters up to 0.5m diameter have been recorded (Chippendale).

Weeds
This community is susceptible to weed invasion from species such as Sonchus oleraceus, Lolium rigidum complex, Aira caryophyllea, Briza maxima, B. minor, Anagallis arvensis, Pentaschistis airoides, Ursinia anthemoides, Avena barbata and Ehrharta longiflora.

Comments

This community may be threatened by changes in hydrology and increasing salinity.

Most of this community occurs outside the study area (the Wheatbelt NRM region) and further survey is needed to effectively classify this community in the Wheatbelt.