Dinosperma erythrococcum – Tingletongue (plant)
Dinosperma erythrococcum is a member of the Rutaceae family, native to QLD and NSW, usually in drier rainforest. Can grow to 20 metres tall.
The common name Tingletongue refers to the tingling sensation when a small piece of leaf or bark is chewed, reminiscent of Spilanthes, except it is more fragrant and more intense. Also a food source for larval stages of the Orchard Butterfly.
Dinosperma erythrococcum gave leaf oil with four different forms being detected, all of which were either mono- or sesquiterpenoid in nature (Brophy et al, 2004). Some papers indicate novel and insecticidal isobutylamides present in Dinosperma erythrococcum. Isobutylamides are also present in Echinacea species which also gives a tingling effect when a piece of root or flower is chewed.
Care and Cultivation
Likes a full sun to part shade position and adequate moisture for regular growth. Drought tolerant and quite hardy once established.