Epacris longiflora, commonly known as the fuchsia heath, is a plant, typically found in Australian belonging to the heath family whose native range extends from the central coast of New South Wales to southern Queensland. The long tubular flowers give it the name longiflora and are present most of the year.
Fuchsia heath is an erect to spreading shrub of 50–200 cm in height and stems with prominent short broad leaf scars.
Leaves are ovate, 5.6–17 mm long, 3–6.6 mm wide, apex acuminate, base obtuse or cordate, margins minutely toothed, spreading to ± reflexed, lamina thin, flat, sometimes scabrous on upper surface.
The flower is formed by five petals fused to form the tubelike corolla, with the petal ends free to form five corolla lobes at the apex. There are five whorled sepals at the base of the corolla. Within the corolla is a central style with the stigma at the apex and ovary at the base.
Flowers are red-tubed with white lobes, or all white, peduncle to 2 mm long, and bracts usually long-acuminate. Sepals 4.5–6 mm long. Corolla tube 12–27 mm long and lobes are erect to spreading of about 2.4–4.4 mm in length. Anthers hidden in tube.The flowers are initially erect extending down branches,later pendent.
Fruits are capsules of 3–4 mm in length with seeds of size 0.74 x 0.5 mm, average weight of 0.10–0.15 mg.
Epacris longiflora was first formally described by Antonio José Cavanilles in 1797 and the description was published in Icones et descriptiones plantarum. The specific epithet (longiflora) is derived from the Latin words longus meaning "long" or "extended" and flos meaning "flower". One vernacular name is cigarette flower, from the pattern on the flower.
Fuchsia Heath have been found to grow in sandy soils on cliff faces, heath to woodland margins and dry sclerophyll forests.
Plants are thought to live 5–20 years in the wild.
A highly regarded ornamental garden plant, Epacris longiflora was first cultivated in England in 1803. It grows in a variety of soils as long as the drainage is good, and does best in a partly shaded position.
Along with other members of the genus, Epacris longiflora initially proved difficult to grow and maintain on original soil in the Australian National Botanic Gardens in Canberra.