Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia


A. R. Bean

Solanum opacum

Habit. Prostrate or sprawling, annual or non-rhizomatous perennial shrub, 0.1–0.4 m high. Large stems prickles absent.

Branchlets. Branchlets ridged. Branchlet prickles absent. Branchlet hairs Type 2 or simple. Branchlet stellae absent. Branchlet simple hairs antrorse, curved, not gland-tipped. Branchlet Type 2 hairs absent or sparse.

Leaves. Leaves elliptical or ovate, shallowly lobed throughout. Leaf lobes 1–4 on each side, acute, lobing index 1.2–2. Leaves 1.5–7.5 cm long, 1–3.5 cm wide. Leaf apex acute, base cuneate. Petioles 0.8–3.5 cm long, prickles absent.

Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface green. Upper leaf surface prickles absent. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs absent, protostellae absent, hair density absent from surface. Upper leaf surface simple hairs antrorse, curved, very sparse or confined to major veins or sparse, not gland-tipped. Upper leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent or present only in vein depressions.

Lower leaf surface. Lower leaf surface green. Lower leaf surface prickles absent. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density absent. Lower leaf surface simple hairs antrorse, curved, very sparse or confined to major veins or sparse, not gland-tipped. Lower leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent or present only on veins.

Inflorescence. Inflorescence supra-axillary, umbellate. Inflorescence common peduncle 15–30 mm long. Inflorescence rachis prickles absent. Inflorescence 2–4-flowered, with all flowers bisexual. Flowers 5-merous. Pedicels at anthesis 4–7.5 mm long, prickles absent. Calyx tube at anthesis 2–3 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis hemispherical or deltate, 0.4–1 mm long. Calyx prickles at anthesis absent. Calyx stellae absent. Calyx simple hairs present, Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla white, 3–5 mm long, deeply lobed. Anthers 1.5–2 mm long. Functional style 3–3.5 mm long, protruding between anthers, with simple hairs.

Fruits. Fruiting calyx lobes less than half length of mature fruit, prickles absent. Mature fruits 2–5 per inflorescence, globular, 8–10 mm diameter, green, often streaked, dull. Pedicels at fruiting stage 7–12 mm long. Seeds pale yellow, 1.5–2.2 mm long, stone-cell granules present (usually 2 in number).

Distribution and habitat. Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania. Qld: Moreton, Darling Downs, Wide Bay, Burnett, Maranoa, Leichhardt, Port Curtis, Kennedy South, Kennedy North. NSW: North Coast, Central Coast, South Coast, Northern Tablelands, Central Tablelands, Southern Tablelands, North-west Slopes, Central-west Slopes, North Western Plains, South Western Plains. Evergreen notophyll rainforest (no eucalypts), wet eucalypt forest with rainforest understorey, or rainforest margins, shrubby eucalypt woodland, remote from rainforest.

Miscellaneous. Sect. Solanum. Common name: Green-berry Nightshade. Data source: Fl of SEQ, specimens, Henderson 1974.

Illustrations. • flowers. • habit.

Cite this publication as: ‘Bean, A.R. 2012 onwards. Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia. Version: 29th June 2013.’.