The scent of a frangipani marks Summer for many people, when I used to live in Sydney the frangipanis and jasmine filled the inner city streets in Summer giving off a potent scent in the warm weather. What many people don’t know is that there is a native equivalent, yes a native Frangipani!

The native frangipani has a strong scent much like it’s exotic friend, and is very attractive to bees and butterflies.

Hymenosporum flavum

Hymenosporum flavum is a sub tropical tree found growing naturally from just north of Sydney up into tropical Queensland. The trees growth and habitat is affected by where it is grown, reaching a tall 25m in the tropical areas of QLD or a modest 5-8m if grown further south in a drier climate and shallower soil.

Hymenosporum flavum

This beautiful specimen I found in the Botanic Gardens of Hobart of all places! showing that it can be grown in climates with frost if protected when young.

Hymenosporum flavum

The native frangipani begins flowering in Spring and continues through the Summer months. The flowers appear cream at first and turn a butter yellow as they mature, giving the tree a lovely contrast in the warmer months.

Hymenosporum flavum

The native Frangipani makes an excellent street tree in warmer climates or protected positions and as it has a naturally columnar habit suits smaller gardens or tight spaces. The leaves are a deep luscious green which also lends the tree to being a good candidate for screening. There are also dwarf cultivars available ‘Gold Nugget’, ‘Butterfly Scents’ and my favourite ‘Luscious’ I have some images of these low shrubs here.


4 responses to “Summer Scents: Hymenosporum flavum”

  1. lanny lee

    Luscious Dwarf Native Frangipani

    grow well in melbourne, victoria?

    1. Kath Gadd

      Hi Lanny,

      Hymenosporum ‘Luscious’ is a cultivar of Hymenosporum flavum, which is naturally found on the east coast from north Queensland to NSW so it naturally prefers warmer climes. If you have a sunny position you could still give it a go.

      All the best,
      Hannah and Kath

  2. Bernice Mannix

    Hi, I planted a row of around 12 Native Frangipani along the side boundary fence in Bendigo. It is a protected position. The garden bed is covered with river pebbles as mulch and as a feature. The trees are 3m and up to 5m but what frustrates me is that they are not dense with leaves like the one from Hobart in your picture. There are mature Native Frangipani in various areas of Bendigo that look like the one in Hobart so its not impossible to grow them well. Mine have been planted for 6yrs.In the last 3mths I have added blood and bone. I have never prunes because I want them to be a tree, not a hedge. How can I get them to flourish please?

    1. Kath Gadd

      Hi Bernice,
      Hymenosporum flavaum is a rainforest pioneer tree, meaning they grow well with some shelter and shade. They also love moisture, perhaps you could try some regular deep watering combined with some nitrogen rich tree tablets. Another thing to check is that the river pebeles are not heating up in Summer, these trees prefer a cool root run.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related posts

Birdbaths designed for birds

Mallee Birdbaths are specifically designed to serve birds. The copper dishes are broad and shallow, allowing birds to land on the edge and walk into the water. The baths are modern, elegant and durable. They are locally made in the Illawarra (NSW, Australia) using materials that will weather well and last decades. For help on which dish to choose, go here.