Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia
Habit. Erect, rhizomatous perennial shrub, 0.7–1.5 m high.
Branchlets. Branchlets brown or green. Branchlet prickles 350–800 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 1–10 mm long, 14–18 times longer than wide, glabrous. Branchlet hairs Type 2 or stellate. Branchlet stellae absent or sparse to moderate, 0.3–0.5 mm diameter, stalks 0 mm long. Branchlet stellae lateral rays 4–6, porrect. Branchlet stellae central ray 0.4–0.8 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Branchlet Type 2 hairs sparse.
Leaves. Leaves broadly ovate or orbicular, deeply lobed throughout. Leaf lobes 3–5 on each side, acute, lobing index 2–25. Leaves 5–11.5 cm long, 3.5–10 cm wide, 1.1–1.5 times longer than broad. Leaf apex acute, base obtuse or cordate. Leaf oblique part 0–7 mm long, obliqueness index 0–9 percent. Petioles 2–3.4 cm long, 25–35% length of lamina, prickles absent.
Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface green. Upper leaf surface prickles present on midvein and lateral veins, 15–100, straight, acicular, 1–10 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs confined to midrib or distributed throughout, protostellae absent, hair density absent from surface or very sparse. Upper leaf surface stellae 0.9–7.5 mm apart, 0.3–0.45 mm across, stalks 0 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellae lateral rays 4–8, porrect. Upper leaf surface stellae central ray 0.4–0.8 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Upper leaf surface simple hairs absent. Upper leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent.
Lower leaf surface. Lower leaf surface green. Lower leaf surface prickles present on midvein and lateral veins, 10–30, straight, acicular. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density absent or very sparse. Lower leaf surface stellae 0.8–3.2 mm apart, 0.45–0.6 mm diameter, stalks 0–0.1 mm long. Lower leaf surface stellae lateral rays 6–8, porrect. Lower leaf surface stellae central ray 0.4–0.8 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Lower leaf surface simple hairs absent. Lower leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent.
Inflorescence. Inflorescence supra-axillary, cymose (pseudo-racemose) or branched (paniculate to corymbose). Inflorescence common peduncle 18–39 mm long. Inflorescence rachis prickles present. Inflorescence 14–30-flowered, with all flowers bisexual. Flowers 5-merous. Pedicels at anthesis 4–8 mm long, same thickness throughout, 0.3–0.4 mm thick at mid-point, prickles absent. Calyx tube at anthesis 1.5–2.5 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis deltate or rostrate, 1.5–3 mm long. Calyx prickles at anthesis absent. Calyx stellae moderate, transparent, 0.25–0.4 mm across, stalks 0 mm long, lateral rays 6–8. Calyx stellae central ray 0.7–1.3 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Calyx simple hairs absent, Type 2 hairs present. Corolla purple, 7–9 mm long, deeply lobed, inner surface glabrous. Anthers 4–5.5 mm long. Ovary with Type 2 hairs only or with stellate and Type 2 hairs. Functional style 4.5–6.5 mm long, protruding between anthers, with Type 2 hairs only.
Fruits. Fruiting calyx lobes less than half length of mature fruit, prickles absent. Mature fruits 3–9 per inflorescence, globular, 6–9 mm diameter, black, 1-locular (septum absent or incomplete). Mature fruits placenta not apparent. Mature fruits interior juicy, succulent, pericarp 0.15–0.3 mm thick. Pedicels at fruiting stage 4–10 mm long, 0.5–0.8 mm thick at mid-point. Seeds pale yellow or black, 2.1–2.8 mm long.
Distribution and habitat. Queensland. Qld: Darling Downs, Maranoa, Leichhardt. Semi-evergreen vine thicket or brigalow/belah, shrubby eucalypt woodland, remote from rainforest.
Miscellaneous. Subg. Leptostemonum. Data source: specimens.
Illustrations. • flowering plant. • flowering plant.
Cite this publication as: ‘Bean, A.R. 2012 onwards. Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia. Version: 23rd June 2012. http://delta-intkey.com’.