Geebung (Persoonia spp.)
Size: Up to 5m
Description: Shrubs or small trees to 5m with yellow flowers and oval fruits with persistent styles. There are approx 990 species of Geebung native to Australia.
Habitat: Found in a variety of habitats in all states, from heaths to open forests and woodlands, on coastal sands and sandstone.
Foliage: Alternate leaves with a variety of different leaf shapes depending on the species. Narrow, linear, oblong and pine needle like 2-8cm long (P. linearis, P. pinifolia). Broad, elliptic to ovate 8-16cm (P. levis). Oblanceolate 3-9cm (P. lanceolata). Bark dark, loose and flaky with deep red colour underneath (P. levis, P. linearis).
Flowers: Yellow or cream and have 4 slender arched petals (mostly summer).
Fruit/Seeds: Fruits are oval to oblong (1.5 x 1.2cm) with a prominent style attached. Soft edible flesh surrounds a single stone. Fruit only ripen once they fall to the ground.
Distribution: VIC, NSW, QLD, NT, WA, SA, TAS
Uses: Fruit is edible but only ripens after it has fallen to the ground and turns dark purple/black. Some have an apple crumble-like taste, some are astringent. Be quick or the wildlife will eat them first. Roasted seeds can be cracked and eaten. Juice of unripe fruit used traditionally to treat scratches and burns.