Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia
Habit. Prostrate or sprawling, herbaceous resprouter, 0.1–0.5 m high.
Branchlets. Branchlets yellow or brown or green. Branchlet prickles 30–300 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 1–8 mm long, 12–17 times longer than wide, glabrous or with scattered Type 2 hairs on lower half. Branchlet hairs simple or stellate. Branchlet stellae sparse to moderate to dense, 0.6–1 mm diameter, stalks 0–0.2 mm long. Branchlet stellae lateral rays 4–5, porrect. Branchlet stellae central ray 2–5 times as long as laterals, gland-tipped, thready or rigid. Branchlet simple hairs erect, straight, gland-tipped, 0.2–1.7 mm long.
Leaves. Leaves ovate or broadly ovate, shallowly lobed throughout. Leaf lobes 4–5 on each side, acute, lobing index 1.1–1.2. Leaves 5–10.5 cm long, 4–7.5 cm wide, 1.3–1.7 times longer than broad. Leaf apex acute, base obtuse or cordate. Leaf oblique part 0–8 mm long, obliqueness index 0–8 percent. Petioles 3.4–5.4 cm long, 40–55% length of lamina, prickles present.
Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface green. Upper leaf surface prickles present on midvein and lateral veins, 30–145, straight, acicular, 1–7 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs absent, hair density absent from surface. Upper leaf surface simple hairs erect, straight, sparse or moderate to dense, not gland-tipped or gland-tipped, 0.2–2 mm long. Upper leaf surface Type 2 hairs present throughout. Upper leaf surface Type 2 hairs 0.1–1 mm apart.
Lower leaf surface. Lower leaf surface green. Lower leaf surface prickles present on midvein only or present on midvein and lateral veins, 20–65, straight, acicular. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density very sparse to moderate. Lower leaf surface stellae 0.5–3 mm apart, 0.5–0.9 mm diameter, stalks 0–0.2 mm long. Lower leaf surface stellae lateral rays 4–6, porrect. Lower leaf surface stellae central ray 2–5 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Lower leaf surface simple hairs erect, straight, sparse or moderate to dense, not gland-tipped or gland-tipped, 0.1–1.4 mm long. Lower leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent.
Inflorescence. Inflorescence supra-axillary, cymose (pseudo-racemose). Inflorescence common peduncle 18–27 mm long. Inflorescence rachis prickles present. Inflorescence 2–7-flowered, with all flowers bisexual. Flowers 5-merous. Pedicels at anthesis 4–7 mm long, same thickness throughout, 0.2–0.4 mm thick at mid-point, prickles present. Calyx tube at anthesis 1.5–3 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis attenuate, 7–11 mm long. Calyx prickles at anthesis present, 25–35 per flower, 2.5–6 mm long. Calyx stellae absent or very sparse to sparse or moderate, transparent, 0.5–0.7 mm across, stalks 0–0.1 mm long, lateral rays 2–4. Calyx stellae central ray 4–6 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Calyx simple hairs present, Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla mauve, 8–12 mm long, shallowly lobed, inner surface glabrous. Anthers 3.5–5 mm long. Ovary with Type 2 hairs only. Functional style 5–6 mm long, protruding between anthers, glabrous.
Fruits. Fruiting calyx lobes more than half length of mature fruit or lobes exceeding mature fruit, prickles 2.5–6 mm long. Mature fruits 1–6 per inflorescence, globular, 11–13 mm diameter, yellowish-green or green, often streaked, 2-locular. Mature fruits placenta stalked, circular to elliptical. Mature fruits interior moist but not juicy, pericarp 0.6–0.7 mm thick. Pedicels at fruiting stage 5–9 mm long, 0.6–1 mm thick at mid-point. Seeds pale yellow, 1.7–2.1 mm long.
Distribution and habitat. Queensland. Qld: Cook, Kennedy North. Evergreen notophyll rainforest (no eucalypts), wet eucalypt forest with rainforest understorey, or rainforest margins.
Miscellaneous. Subg. Leptostemonum. Data source: specimens.
Illustrations. • cookii_rigel.jpg.
Cite this publication as: ‘Bean, A.R. 2012 onwards. Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia. Version: 29th June 2013. http://delta-intkey.com’.