Rhizomes in tropical eucalypts and their role in recovery from fire damage
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): C. J. Lacey
Publication Year: 1974

Cataloging Information

  • adaptation
  • Australia
  • buds
  • distribution
  • eucalyptus
  • Eucalyptus porrecta
  • fire frequency
  • fire injuries (plants)
  • fire intensity
  • fire management
  • Northern Territory of Australia
  • perennial plants
  • plant growth
  • reproduction
  • roots
  • trees
  • tropical regions
  • woody plants
  • International
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: June 1, 2018
FRAMES Record Number: 35536
Tall Timbers Record Number: 9837
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Fire File DDW
TTRS Abstract Status: Okay, Fair use, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


Some tropical woody perennials including three Eucalyptus species, viz. E. porrecta S. T. Blake, E. ptychocarpa F. Muell., and E. jacobsiana Blakely, were observed to have rhizomes and rhizomatous systems. The possession of rhizomes by woody perennials has rarely been reported, and never in other eucalypts. Further investigation of E. porrecta revealed that it occurred in varying stages of development, ranging from short aerial stems commonly less than 0·7 m high to trees varying from 1·5 to 10 m high. The short stems and trees were distributed as isolated individuals, or in clonal patches usually consisting only of short stems or one to many trees in combination with short stems. Aerial systems were correlated with fire frequency and severity. The characteristics of rhizomes and rhizomatous systems of E. porrecta are described in relation to aerial systems. The adaptive significance of the rhizomatous systems to persistence and reproduction of the species is discusscd. Vegetative spread results in a large reservoir of protected dormant buds in underground stems. This ensures persistence of the plant when subjected to frequent fire damage.© CSIRO

Lacey, C. J. 1974. Rhizomes in tropical eucalypts and their role in recovery from fire damage. Australian Journal of Botany, v. 22, no. 1, p. 29-38.