Solanum species of eastern and northern Australia

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A. R. Bean

Solanum versicolor

Habit. Erect, herbaceous resprouter, 0.15–0.3 m high. Large stems bark furrowed, corky throughout.

Branchlets. Branchlets yellow or brown. Branchlet prickles 1–10 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 1–5 mm long, 13–20 times longer than wide, glabrous. Branchlet hairs Type 2 or stellate. Branchlet stellae dense, 0.5–0.8 mm diameter, stalks 0–0.1 mm long. Branchlet stellae lateral rays 7–9, porrect. Branchlet stellae central ray 0.2–0.5 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped, rigid. Branchlet Type 2 hairs sparse.

Leaves. Leaves lanceolate or elliptical, entire. Leaves 3.5–6 cm long, 1.1–2.2 cm wide, 2.5–4 times longer than broad. Leaf apex obtuse, base cuneate. Leaf oblique part 0–1.5 mm long, obliqueness index 0–3 percent. Petioles 0.6–1.4 cm long, 17–25% length of lamina, prickles absent.

Upper leaf surface. Upper leaf surface grey-green. Upper leaf surface prickles absent. Upper leaf surface stellate hairs distributed throughout, hair density moderate density or dense. Upper leaf surface stellae 0.15–0.3 mm apart, 0.5–0.7 mm across, stalks 0–0.15 mm long. Upper leaf surface stellae lateral rays 8–9, porrect. Upper leaf surface stellae central ray 0.5–1 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Upper leaf surface simple hairs erect, straight, sparse, gland-tipped, 0.05–0.1 mm long. Upper leaf surface Type 2 hairs absent.

Lower leaf surface. Lower leaf surface white, grey. Lower leaf surface prickles absent. Lower leaf surface stellate hair density dense to very dense. Lower leaf surface stellae 0.05–0.1 mm apart, 0.6–0.9 mm diameter, stalks 0.1–0.2 mm long. Lower leaf surface stellae lateral rays 7–8, porrect. Lower leaf surface stellae central ray 0.4–1 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, solitary or cymose (pseudo-racemose). Inflorescence common peduncle absent or present. Inflorescence rachis prickles absent. Inflorescence 1–3-flowered, with all flowers bisexual. Flowers 5-merous. Pedicels at anthesis 11–26 mm long, same thickness throughout, 0.5–0.6 mm thick at mid-point, prickles absent. Calyx tube at anthesis 1.5–3 mm long. Calyx lobes at anthesis attenuate, 3–4.5 mm long. Calyx prickles at anthesis absent. Calyx stellae moderate to dense, transparent, 0.5–0.7 mm across, stalks 0–0.1 mm long, lateral rays 6–8. Calyx stellae central ray 0.5–1 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped. Calyx simple hairs present, Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla white, 7–11 mm long, shallowly lobed. Anthers 4–5 mm long. Ovary with Type 2 hairs only. Functional style 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 1–2 per inflorescence, globular, 12 mm diameter, green, often streaked, 2-locular. Mature fruits placenta sessile, semi-circular. Mature fruits interior moist but not juicy, pericarp 0.4–0.5 mm thick. Pedicels at fruiting stage 12–26 mm long, 0.6–0.9 mm thick at mid-point. Seeds pale yellow, 2.7–3 mm long.

Distribution and habitat. Queensland. Qld: Warrego. Red earths in mulga (Acacia aneura) dominated communities.

Miscellaneous. Subg. Leptostemonum. Data source: specimens.

Illustrations. • holotype. • flower.


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

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