Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Callistemon salignus (Sm.) Sweet var. viridiflorus (Sims) F.Muell.

Half hardy, erect to spreading shrub or small tree with papery white bark, purplish-pink new growth, willow-like leaves, and greenish flowers in the typical bottlebrush spikes, to 5cm long, in spring and summer.  To 10m.  [RHSE, Hortus, FNSW, Hilliers’].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘This species [Metrosideros viridiflora], which appears to us to be an undescribed one, approaches very near to M. saligna; but differs in having less flexible branches, leaves quite smooth, darker green, smaller, more rigid and pungent, not so much narrowed at the base, and more evidently petioled; calyx, corolla, and stamens all green; the latter much longer, and pointing outwards.’  [BM t. 2602/1825].  Introduced to Britain in 1818.  [PD].

History at Camden Park

Listed in the 1857 catalogue only [T.682/1857].  Grows naturally in low-lying river flats and damp creeks from northern Victoria to Queensland and would have been easily collected by William Macarthur.


Published Jan 17, 2010 - 04:56 PM | Last updated Mar 29, 2010 - 03:41 PM

Figured are the willow-like leaves and green bottle-brush flowers.  Curtis's Botanical Magazine t.2602, 1825.

Callistemon salignus (Sm.) Sweet var. viridiflorus (Sims) F.Muell. | BM t.2602/1825 | BHL

Family Myrtaceae
Region of origin

Eastern Australia

  • Metrosideros saligna Sm.
  • Metrosideros viridiflora Sims
  • Callistemon viridiflorum (Sims) Sweet
  • Melaleuca salicina Craven
Common Name

Green-flowered white bottlebrush, Sweet willow bottlebrush

Name in the Camden Park Record

Metrosideros viridiflorus 

Confidence level high