Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia
Habit. Erect, rhizomatous perennial shrub, 1–1.5 m high.
Branchlets. Branchlets yellow or rusty or brown. Branchlet prickles 220–600 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 3–8 mm long, 12–20 times longer than wide, with scattered stellate hairs on lower half. Branchlet hairs stellate. Branchlet stellae very dense, 0.9–1.2 mm diameter, stalks 0–2 mm long. Branchlet stellae lateral rays 6–8, ascending. Branchlet stellae central ray 0.8–1.2 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped, thready. Branchlet Type 2 hairs absent.
Leaves. Leaves ovate or broadly ovate, entire. Leaves 6.8–14.3 cm long, 2.9–6.4 cm wide, 1.7–2.3 times longer than broad. Leaf apex acute, base cuneate or obtuse or cordate. Leaf oblique part 4–10 mm long, obliqueness index 5–13 percent. Petioles 0.5–2.3 cm long, 6–24% length of lamina, prickles present.
Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface grey. Upper leaf surface prickles absent or present on midvein only, 0–10, straight, acicular, 1.5–4 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs distributed throughout, protostellae absent, hair density very dense. Upper leaf surface stellae 0–0.05 mm apart, 0.8–1 mm across, stalks 0–1 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellae lateral rays 7–8, ascending. Upper leaf surface stellae central ray 0.8–1.2 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 white, grey or yellowish. Lower leaf surface prickles present on midvein only, 3–17, straight, acicular. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density very dense. Lower leaf surface stellae 0–0.05 mm apart, 0.9–1.2 mm diameter, stalks 0–1.2 mm long. Lower leaf surface stellae lateral rays 7–8, porrect or ascending. Lower leaf surface stellae central ray 0.8–1.2 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Lower leaf surface simple hairs absent. Lower leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent.
Inflorescence. Inflorescence leaf-opposed, cymose (pseudo-racemose). Inflorescence common peduncle 15–26 mm long. Inflorescence rachis prickles present. Inflorescence 13–30-flowered, with one bisexual flower, the rest male. Flowers 5-merous, markedly dimorphic, with larger pricklier basal flower(s). Pedicels at anthesis 8–28 mm long (males 8–11, bisex 15–28), same thickness throughout, prickles absent or present. Calyx prickles on basal bisexual flowers 80–160, 3–8 mm long. Calyx prickles on distal male flowers 0–20, 2–4 mm long. Calyx tube at anthesis 2.5–6 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis deltate or attenuate, 5–23 mm long (males 5–8, bisex 12–23). Calyx stellae very dense, yellow or transparent, 0.8–1 mm across, stalks 0–1 mm long, lateral rays 7–8. Calyx stellae central ray 0.8–1.2 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Calyx simple hairs absent, Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla purple, 10–19 mm long (males 10–13, bisex 17–19), rotate, inner surface glabrous. Anthers 5–6 mm long. Filaments 1–1.8 mm long. Ovary glabrous. Functional style 9.5–11 mm long, protruding between anthers, glabrous.
Fruits. Fruiting calyx lobes more than half length of mature fruit or lobes exceeding mature fruit, prickles 3–9 mm long. Mature fruits 1 per inflorescence, globular, 23–28 mm diameter (when dry), yellow. Pedicels at fruiting stage 17–32 mm long, 2–2.5 mm thick at mid-point. Seeds black, 3.2 mm long.
Distribution and habitat. Western Australia.
Miscellaneous. Subg. Leptostemonum. Data source: specimens.
Cite this publication as: ‘Bean, A.R. 2012 onwards. Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia. Version: 29th June 2013. http://delta-intkey.com’.