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Scale bar 10mm. Copyright CSIRO
Flowers. Copyright Australian Plant Image Index (APII). Photographer: M. Fagg.
10th leaf stage. Copyright CSIRO
1st leaf stage, cotyledons absent, hypogeal germination. Copyright CSIRO
Brachychiton paradoxus Schott & Endl.
Schott, H.W. & Endlicher, S.L. (1832) Meletemata Botanica: 34. Type: Northern Territory, Gulf of Carpentaria, 1802, F. L. Bauer?. Neo: North Coast of New Holland, R. Brown; BM. Fide Guymer (1988).
Sterculia paradoxa (Schott & Endl.) Druce, The Botanical Exchange Club and Society of the British Isles Report for 1916, Suppl. 2: 649(1917), Type: ?. Sterculia paradoxa (Schott & Endl.) Druce var. paradoxa, Bibliotheca Botanica 89(4): 967(1928), Type: ?. Sterculia paradoxa var. typica Domin, Bibliotheca Botanica 89(4): 967(1928), Type: ?. Brachychiton ramiflorus R.Br., Plantae Javanicae Rariores: 234(1844), Type: Northern Territory, Sir Edward Pellew Islands, 17-18 Dec. 1802, R. Brown; holo: BM. Sterculia ramiflora (R.Br.) Benth., Flora Australiensis 1: 227(1863), Type: ?.
Kurrajong, Red Flowering; Red Flowering Kurrajong
Occasionally grows into a small tree but usually flowers and fruits as a shrub.
Two or four main lateral veins and the midrib radiate from the base of the leaf blade. Both the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf blade clothed in long-armed stellate hairs. Leaf blades about 6.5-9 x 6-13 cm. Petioles terete, about 1.5-5.5 cm long. Stipules +/- linear, about 4-8 mm long. Reticulate veins depressed on the upper surface of the leaf blade and raised on the lower surface with the leaf blade arched between. Under a lens the upper surface resembles numerous hillocks while the under surface resembles an aerial view of a mining field with numerous pits.
Perianth orange-red outside but green towards the base. Perianth about 30-42 x 20-24 mm, stellate hairy on the outer and inner surfaces. Floral nectaries aggregated to form an irregularly lobed ring. Anthers (at least 15) yellow-orange, about 1.5 x 1 mm. Staminal column about 20 mm long. Free staminal filaments about 1.5-2 mm long. Ovary clothed in stellate hairs. Styles about 4-5 mm long, stigmas about 3 mm long.
Cotyledons enclosed in the seed coat. First leaves about 25-30 x 25 mm, petioles about 15 mm long. Stem, petiole and upper and lower leaf blade surfaces clothed in brown stellate hairs. Stipules about 3-4 mm long, filiform and hairy. Taproot swollen, carrot-like (Daucus carota). At the tenth leaf stage: all plant parts clothed in soft stellate hairs. Leaf blade wider than long, palmate, upper surface bullate, apex obtuse, base cordate with the lobes overlapping one another. Petioles about as long as the leaf blade. Taproot swollen, sausage-shaped.
Distribution and Ecology
Endemic to Australia, occurs in NT and the western parts of NEQ near the Northern Territory border, CYP and the north-eastern part of NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 300 m. Usually grows in open eucalypt forest but also found in beach forest, vine thickets and monsoon forest.
Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)