Plant typeBotanical NameCommon NameDetails
Trees over 6m:Acacia mearnsiiBlack WattleGum is used as a chewing gum that dissolves as you chew.
Acacia melanoxylonBlackwoodSeeds are edible and flowers can be cooked and eaten.
Acacia pycnanthaGolden WattleRoasted seeds and gum can be eaten. Bark used as a sedative for rheumatism.
Allocasuarina littoralisBlack SheoakThe gum can be chewed or made into a jelly by melting in hot water.
Eucalyptus viminalisManna GumSugary sap can be eaten, and flowers soaked in water make a sweet drink.
Large shrubs:Prostanthera lasianthosVictorian Christmas-bushAromatic leaves can be used to make tea or flavour food.
Small-medium shrubs:Coprosma quadrifidaPrickly Currant-bushBerries are sweet and high in Vitamin C.
Einadia nutansNodding SaltbushRed berries are sweet to eat. Leaves can also be eaten but should be boiled first.
Prostanthera melissifoliaBalm Mint-bushAromatic leaves can be used to make tea or flavour food.
Solanum aviculareKangaroo AppleHas berries which are poisonous while green, but edible once orange.
Climbers:Clematis aristataAustral ClematisTaproot can be roasted and eaten.
Clematis microphyllaSmall-leaved ClematisTaproot can be roasted and eaten.
Rubus parvifoliusSmall-leaf BrambleHas edible small fruit somewhat like raspberries but not as sweet.
Ground covers, low plants:Billardiera mutabilisCommon Apple BerryFruit can be eaten raw when ripe or roasted when green.
Centella cordifoliaSwamp PennywortUsed as a medicinal herb for arthritis and rheumatism.
Geranium solanderiCrane’s BillWoody tap root rich in starch can be cooked and eaten.
Kennedia prostrataRunning PostmanNectar is sweet like honeysuckle, stems can be used for twine.
Mentha australisRiver MintLeaves can be used to make tea, and also to treat coughs and colds.
Microseris lanceolataYam DaisyTuber can be roasted or fried.
Viola hederaceaNative VioletFlowers can be added fresh to salads.
Wahlenbergia multicaulisTadgell’s BluebellFlowers can be used in salads.
Wahlenbergia strictaTall BluebellFlowers can be used in salads.
Lilies:Arthropodium milleflorumPale Vanilla LilyTubers can be eaten raw or cooked. Flowers can be eaten raw.
Arthropodium strictumChocolate LilyTubers can be eaten raw or cooked.
Bulbine bulbosaBulbine LilyTubers can be roasted and eaten, they are sweet tasting and contain calcium and iron.
Burchardia umbellataMilkmaidsTubers can be roasted and eaten.
Dianella admixtaBlack-anther Flax-lilyDark blue or purple berries edible.
Dianella laevisPale Flax-lilyDark blue or purple berries edible.
Dianella tasmanicaTasman Flax-lilyDark blue or purple berries edible.
Grasses:Themeda triandraKangaroo GrassSeeds can be ground to produce flour.
Rushes:Lomandra longifoliaSpiny-headed Mat-rushWhite leaf bases can be chewed to release starch.

For further information on bush tucker plants:

Download the “Indigenous Plant Use Guide” booklet by the Clean Air and Urban Landscapes Hub at the University of Melbourne – authored by Barkandji woman Zena Cumpston. It explores the cultural, nutritional, technological and medicinal use of indigenous plants.