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Leaf underside. Copyright ATH
Leaves and inflorescence. Copyright ATH
Bud and leaf sheath. Copyright ATH
Inflorescence. Copyright ATH
Stem cross-section. Copyright ATH
Habit. Copyright ATH
Cecropia peltata L.
Linnaeus, C. von (1759) Systema Naturae, Editio Decima 2: 1286. Type: Jamaica.
Trumpet Tree; Snakewood
Fast growing tree to 20 m tall. Stems distinctly hollow, sometimes with pores that enable ants to enter and nest. Stilt roots may be present from 1 m up trunk. Leaf scars are obvious.
Large leaves resembling paw-paw, with 12 deep lobes up to halfway towards base, margins wavy. Midrib distinctly raised near base but flat towards midle and apex. Underside pale, minutely hairy; top side darker, scabrous. Stipules large, bifurcate, hairy, to 15 cm long, green turning pale brown when about to fall. Base of petiole is swollen and has a mass of glands turning black with age, where ants feed.
Male and female flowers occur on different plants. Male flowers in umbellate culsters of spikes 10-18 cm long in culsters of 3-9. Female flowers in spikes 17-30 cm long, in clusters of 2-4.
Features not abailable.
Distribution and Ecology
Only known naturalised occurence was near Mission Beach, the plants were destroyed. Most likely to be found in wetter habitats such as riparian zones and dry rainforest remnants.
Introduced Class 1 weed species, rarely naturalised in North Queensland. Occasional garden plants are found in Mackay, Cairns and Brisbane. Qld Govt (2008).