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Harrisonia brownii

Family

Rutaceae

Botanical Name

Harrisonia brownii A.Juss.

Jussieu, A.L. de (1825) Memoires du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle 12: 540. Type: Timor, collector unknown; holo: ?.

Common name

Thorn Bush

Stem

Occasionally grows into a small tree but usually flowers and fruits as a shrub about 2-4 m tall.

Leaves

Terminal buds and young shoots densely clothed in pale brown hairs. Lateral leaflet blades about 1.5-5.5 x 0.7-3 cm. Middle leaflet larger than the lateral leaflets, to about 3.5-9 cm long. Middle leaflet usually stalked, lateral leaflets sessile or with very short stalks. Compound leaf petiole channelled on the upper surface.

Flowers

Calyx lobes about 0.5 mm long. Petals up to 5 mm long. Stamens eight, filaments with a hairy appendage on the adaxial surface, anthers clothed in minute hairs or glands. Disk cylindrical, 8-lobed. Styles four, up to 2.5 mm long. Carpels 4-5, fused for about two thirds of their length.

Fruit

Fruits variable in size and shape depending on the number of carpels which develop. Frequently globose, 4-5 mm diam. but lobed fruits also produced. Fruits black when ripe but the flesh white or translucent. Embryo with U-shaped, i.e. curved, cotyledons which are much larger than the radicle.

Seedlings

Cotyledons oblong, about 5-10 x 1.5-4 mm. First pair of leaves +/- opposite, trifoliolate and at least some of the leaflets conspicuously lobed. At the tenth leaf stage: leaves trifoliolate, lateral leaflets +/- sessile, margin toothed, middle leaflet toothed or lobed. Stipules, when present, are spines up to 2 mm long. Terminal bud and young stem clothed in pale hairs.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 100 m. Grows as an understory plant in monsoon forest and vine thickets. Also occurs in Malesia.

WA

X

NT

X

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)

X

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)

X

RFK Code

3205