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Tasmannia lanceolata

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Tasmannia lanceolata
Tasmannia lanceolata.jpg
Tasmannia lanceolata
Mount Donna Buang, Victoria, Australia
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Magnoliids
Order: Canellales
Family: Winteraceae
Genus: Tasmannia
Species:
T. lanceolata
Binomial name
Tasmannia lanceolata
Synonyms

Tasmannia lanceolata (syn. Drimys lanceolata), commonly known as Tasmanian pepperberry, mountain pepper (Aus), or Cornish pepper leaf (UK), is a shrub native to woodlands and cool temperate rainforest of south-eastern Australia. The shrub varies from 2 to 10 m high. The aromatic leaves are lanceolate to narrow-elliptic or oblanceolate, 4–12 cm long, and 0.7–2.0 cm wide, with a distinctly pale undersurface. Stems are quite red in colour. The small cream or white flowers appear in summer and are followed by black, globose, two-lobed berries 5–8 mm wide, which appear in autumn.[1][2][3] There are separate male and female plants.[4]

Originally described by French botanist Jean Louis Marie Poiret, it gained its current name in 1969 by A.C. Smith. It had been known for many years as Drimys lanceolata.

Also known as Tasmanian pepperberry, it is found from Tasmania, northwards through Victoria to Barrington Tops in New South Wales. It is found in gullies in rainforest.[5]

Uses

Leaves and berries of the Mountain pepper
Leaves and berries of the Mountain pepper
Dried and crushed Mountain pepper leaves
Dried and crushed Mountain pepper leaves

Polygodial has been identified as the primary active compound in Tasmannia lanceolata, and is also responsible for its peppery taste.

The leaf and berry are used as a spice, typically dried. Tasmanian pepperberry was used as a colonial pepper substitute.[6] More recently, it has become popularised as bushfood condiment. It can be added to curries, cheeses, and alcoholic beverages. It is exported to Japan to flavour wasabi. The berries are sweet and fruity at first with a lingering peppery aftertaste.[4] Dried T. lanceolata berries and leaves have strong antimicrobial activity against food spoilage organisms. It also has high antioxidant activity.[7] Low safrole clonal selections are grown in plantations for commercial use, as safrole is considered a low-risk toxin.[8]

Used in colonial medicine as a substitute for Winter's bark,[6] a stomachic, it was also used for treating scurvy.[9] Tasmanian pepper is one of a number of native Australian herbs and food species being supported by the Australian Native Food Industry Ltd, which brings together producers of food species from all parts of Australia.[10] The pepperberry can be used as a fish poison.[4]

The 1889 book 'The Useful Native Plants of Australia records that common names included "Pepper Tree" and that "The drupe is used as a condiment, being a fair substitute for pepper, or rather allspice The leaves and bark also have a hot, biting, cinnamon-like taste."[11]

It can be grown as a garden plant. Its berries attract birds,[12] including Currawongs, that feed on them.[4] It can be propagated from cuttings or seed, and can grow in a well-drained acidic soil with some shade, but is sensitive to Phytophthora cinnamomi.[4]

Garden cultivars include 'Mt. Wellington', a compact plant with coppery new growth,[13] and 'Suzette', a variegated cultivar.[14]

References

  1. ^ Beadle, N.C.W., Evans, O.D., Carolin, R.C., Flora of the Sydney Region, A.H. & A.W. Reed, 1976, ISBN 0-589-07086-X
  2. ^ "PlantNET - FloraOnline". plantnet.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
  3. ^ Floyd, A.G., Rainforest Trees of Mainland South-eastern Australia, Inkata Press, 1989, ISBN 0-909605-57-2
  4. ^ a b c d e Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment. "Tasmannia lanceolata" (PDF). Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment website. Tasmanian Government. Retrieved 2009-08-13.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Fairley A, Moore P (2000). Native Plants of the Sydney District:An Identification Guide (2nd ed.). Kenthurst, NSW: Kangaroo Press. pp. 52–53. ISBN 978-0-7318-1031-4.
  6. ^ a b Maiden, J.H., The Useful Native Plants of Australia, Turner & Henderson, Sydney, 1889
  7. ^ Zhao, J., Agboola, S., Functional Properties of Australian Bushfoods - A Report for the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, 2007, RIRDC Publication No 07/030 [1]
  8. ^ Menary, R.C., Drager, V.A., Garland, S.A., Tasmannia lanceolata - Developing a New Commercial Flavour Product, Rural Industries and Development Corporation, 1999.
  9. ^ Ewart, A.J., Flora of Victoria, Melbourne University Press, Melbourne, 1930.
  10. ^ www.pagination.com.au. "Australian Native Food and Botanicals". www.anfil.org.au. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
  11. ^ J. H. Maiden (1889). The useful native plants of Australia : Including Tasmania. Turner and Henderson, Sydney.
  12. ^ "Fact Sheet: PLANT DIARY: Tasmannia lanceolata". Gardening Australia Website. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. April 5, 2002. Retrieved 2009-08-12.
  13. ^ Cally Gardens plant list Archived 2009-07-02 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Plant profile, Bluebell Arboretum and Nursery

External links

This page was last edited on 26 December 2018, at 20:38
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