Zieria arborescens

Scientific name: Zieria arborescens Sims

Author: John Sims 1749-1831

Common name: Stinkwood, Tree Zieria

Family: Rutaceae


Zieria arborescens    


Zieria arborescens, commonly known as Stinkwood and Tree Zieria, is part of the natural vegetation of Mount Tomah.  It is abundant at the edges of our wet eucalypt forest bordering the top of the Main Entry Drive and down through the Gondwana Forest to the Darug Aboriginal Story signage west of the Northern Pavilion.

Not every garden can accommodate large trees. So, for this time when we affirm the value of plants in our lives, here is a shrub to consider.

Stinkwood is widespread from Queensland to Tasmania. It is a common species in wet eucalypt forest. Rainforest margins, on the coast and adjacent ranges are also part of its natural distribution.

The greyish trifoliate leaves lend texture and colour even when the mass of white flowers is not present. Crushed leaves do have a strong smell though the plants seem odour-free except when damaged. It is a pretty shrub, occasionally growing to 10 metres, while a 1.5 to 2 metre high, rounded form seems most common.

A semi-shade tolerant species, this shrub prefers good drainage and adequate water. A layer of mulch, not too close to the trunk, will minimise loss of soil moisture and, of course, save on the water bill whilst helping our environment.