This species has often been confused with Billardiera fusiformis in the past and has often been treated as a synonym[
Sollya heterophylla Lindl.
Billardiera heterophylla is a much-branched, evergreen, shrub usually forming a rounded shape around 1 - 3 metres tall and wide. Some branches eventually become scandent, twining into the surrounding vegetation[
The plant is probably harvested from the wild for local use as a food. It is often grown as an ornamental and has potential for use in soil reclamation and reforestation projects[
The fruit of this species is much eaten by birds and the seed is spread easily by them. It has become a very adventitious colonizer of disturbed sites, whilst horticultural use in the last century in Australia has also spread it far from its original distribution in Western Australia. It is now found in the foothills around every major eastern Australian city[
Australia - southern Western Australia
Eucalypt woodland and open forest but also in coastal heath and around inland salt lakes[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Billardiera heterophylla is native to southern Western Australia, though it has become widely naturalized in the warm temperate to subtropical climate of southeastern Australia where it can experience winter frost and snow[
]. It is likely to succeed outdoors in areas where winters are short and mild, with temperatures seldom falling much below -5°c. In colder areas, mulching the roots in winter can provide extra protection for the plant and then, even if the top is cut back by the cold, the planit might resprout from the base[
Species in this genus generally prefer a moist, well-drained, humus-rich, lime-free soil in sun or semi-shade with a cool root run[
]. Established plants are somewhat drought tolerant[
We have no record for edibility of this fruit, but this species has often been treated as part of Billardiera fusiformis, which does have an edible fruit[
]. The fruit of this species has a fleshy pulp[
] and is also very likely to be edible[
]. The green-purple, oblong-cylindrical fruit is 20 - 30mm long[
This species is a very adventitious colonizer of disturbed sites[
], making it of potential use in reforestation projects within its native range[
]. The salt tolerance and potential use of this species in reclamation schemes in saline areas needs investigation[
Seed - best sown in a warm greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Only just cover the seed. Sow stored seed in early spring in a warm greenhouse. The germination of fresh seed is usually prolific, but stored seed can take a year to germinate[
]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 10 - 12cm with a heel, mid summer in a frame. Fair percentage.