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Petalostylis cassioides – Butterfly Bush (seed)


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A member of the Caesalpiniaceae family, Petalostylis cassioides is native to the central areas of Australia, mainly the Northern Territory and Western Australia. A spreading shrub, sparsely to densely hairy, to about 1 metre tall.

The name Petalostylis alludes to the prominent style in the centre of the flowers, which is broadly winged and boat-shaped and resembles a petal (Moore, 2005). A beautiful species with horticultural potential. The specific name cassioides refers to its similar appearance to the genus Cassia.

Aborigines used the plant to treat various ailments by placing the crushed leaves on the skin.

Reported in the literature to contain: N,N-dimethyltryptamine, N-methyltryptamine, tetrahydroharman and tryptamine (Willaman and Li, 1970). All compounds were found in the seeds and/or the leaves. Petalostylis species are also mentioned in Shulgin & Shulgin (1997) and Ratsch (2005). Shulgin mentions P. cassioides to contain 0.5% alkaloids, mostly tryptamines including DMT, with tetrahydroharman present in leaves and stems (TIHKAL 1997). Crushed seed pods give off a strong tryptamine smell in winter.

Care and Cultivation of Petalostylis cassioides

Pour just boiled water over Petalostylis cassioides seeds and leave to soak for up to 24 hours, or plant immediately after the water cools. Use a well drained mixture (we use perlite and washed river sand in a deep pot like a native tube. Use normal mix in the bottom of the pot to stop sand washing out) in a full sun position. Susceptible to damping off in cool wet areas. Likes plenty of rootspace in a sandy but aerated potting mixture (we are finding sand mixed with perlite to be an excellent medium). Full sun. Drought tolerant and hardy species.

15 seeds per packet


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