Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia
Habit. Erect, rhizomatous perennial shrub, 1–3.5 m high.
Branchlets. Branchlets mauve to purple or brown. Branchlet prickles 5–55 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 2–9 mm long, 10–14 times longer than wide, glabrous. Branchlet hairs stellate. Branchlet stellae sparse to moderate, 0.4–0.5 mm diameter, stalks 0–0.1 mm long. Branchlet stellae lateral rays 4–8, porrect. Branchlet stellae central ray absent or present, 0–0.5 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped, rigid.
Leaves. Leaves elliptical or ovate, shallowly lobed throughout. Leaf lobes 3–5 on each side, acute, lobing index 1.1–1.8. Leaves 9.5–19 cm long, 3.5–7.5 cm wide, 2.3–2.7 times longer than broad. Leaf apex acute or acuminate, base cuneate or obtuse. Leaf oblique part 0–18 mm long, obliqueness index 0–9 percent. Petioles 1.1–2.2 cm long, 10–22% length of lamina, prickles absent.
Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface green. Upper leaf surface prickles present on midvein and lateral veins, 8–40, straight, acicular, 3–11 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs distributed throughout, protostellae present, hair density very sparse to sparse. Upper leaf surface stellae 0.8–1.4 mm apart, 0.4–0.5 mm across, stalks 0 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellae lateral rays 4–8, porrect. Upper leaf surface stellae central ray 0.5–1.5 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 absent or present on midvein only or present on midvein and lateral veins, 0–9, straight, acicular. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density sparse to moderate. Lower leaf surface stellae 0.5–1.3 mm apart, 0.3–0.5 mm diameter, stalks 0 mm long. Lower leaf surface stellae lateral rays 4–8, porrect. Lower leaf surface stellae central ray 0.3–1 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). Inflorescence common peduncle absent. Inflorescence rachis prickles absent. Inflorescence 4–13-flowered, with some bisexual and some male flowers. Flowers 5-merous. Pedicels at anthesis 7–24 mm long, same thickness throughout or markedly thicker distally, 0.5–1 mm thick at mid-point, prickles absent. Calyx tube at anthesis 1–3 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis attenuate, 4–9 mm long. Calyx prickles at anthesis absent. Calyx stellae very sparse to sparse to moderate, yellow, 0.15–0.25 mm across, stalks 0 mm long, lateral rays 5–8. Calyx stellae central ray 0.5–1.5 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Calyx simple hairs present, Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla white or mauve or purple, 8–15 mm long, shallowly lobed or deeply lobed, inner surface glabrous. Anthers 4.5–6 mm long. Ovary with Type 2 hairs only. Functional style 7.5–8.5 mm long, protruding between anthers, glabrous or with Type 2 hairs only.
Fruits. Fruiting calyx lobes less than half length of mature fruit, prickles absent. Mature fruits 1–4 per inflorescence, globular or ellipsoidal or ovoid, 11–15 mm diameter, red, 1-locular (septum absent or incomplete). Mature fruits placenta not apparent. Mature fruits interior juicy, succulent, pericarp 0.4–0.5 mm thick. Pedicels at fruiting stage 26–38 mm long, 0.6–2 mm thick at mid-point. Seeds pale yellow, 2.6–3.4 mm long.
Distribution and habitat. Queensland, New South Wales. Qld: Moreton. NSW: North Coast. Evergreen notophyll rainforest (no eucalypts).
Miscellaneous. Subg. Leptostemonum. Common name: Gin's Whiskers. Data source: specimens.
Illustrations. • fruits. • buds and open flower. • mature fruits. • flowering branch.
Cite this publication as: ‘Bean, A.R. 2012 onwards. Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia. Version: 29th June 2013. http://delta-intkey.com’.