Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Actephila lindleyi (Steud.) Airy Shaw.

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Herbarium sheet: immature fruit. CC-BY: ATH.
Herbarium sheet. CC-BY: ATH.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1971), Notes on Malesian and other Asiatic Euphorbiaceae: CXX - CXLVIII. Kew Bulletin 25(3): 496.


Shrub or small tree to 12 m tall. Branchlets glossy, cream to tan yellow, lenticellate with age, glabrous.


Leaves simple, alternate, subverticillate or subopposite, young leaves with ferruginous hairs, becoming sparsely hairy or hairless. Stipules present, scale like, triangular-ovate to 1.7 mm long. Petiole 0.2-2.4 cm long. Leaf blade elliptic-oblong, narrowly elliptic, oblanceolate or obovate, rarely falcate, 3-17.2 cm long, 1.2-6.4 cm wide, ± flat. Base cuneate to attenuate, margin entire to slightly wavy or undulate, flat to recurved (rarely revolute) apex acute to rounded, rarely retuse. Midrib slightly raised above, prominently raised below at base of blade, tapering to flush toward apex. Lateral veins curving but forming only indistinct loops inside the blade margin.


Inflorescences are axillary, occasionally arising along internodes below axils, and fasciculate. Both male and female flowers produced on the same plant. Buds in axils of leaves are often seen as gnarly clusters interspersed with scale like bracts. Male flowers: pedicels filiform, 1.5-5 mm long; sepals 5, rarely 6,(in other profiles referred to as tepals), apices hooded and ciliate internally; petals 0-5 present, to 2.5 mm long, disk conspicuous rounded, fleshy; stamens 4-5. Female flowers: on filiform pedicels 2-14 mm long, glabrous or with sparse to scattered ferruginous hairs; sepals 5 (in other species profiles they are referred to as tepals), to 3 mm long, apices hooded, internally densely ciliate, green. Petals 0-3 present, 2.5 mm long. Disk conspicuous, fleshy, annular to 5 lobed, ovary with sparse tortuous ferruginous hairs present. Styles 3, fused at base and stigmas 3.


Pedicels 3-25 mm long. Capsules depressed-globose, ovoid or rounded, 11-13.5 mm diam., strongly bullate, dehiscing at maturity, olive green. Sepals persistent at the base of the fruit. Seeds 6-7 mm long, 5-6.5 mm wide, dark olive; caruncle poorly developed. Cotyledons well developed in mature seed, thick and folded.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs at the southern end of NEQ, in CEQ and southwards to south-eastern New South Wales (near Woollongong). Grows in dry rainforest between 40 and 500 m.

Lithoxylon lindleyi Steud. Nomenclator Botanicus Edn. 2, 2(9): 57, (1841). Type: Cult. In Hort. Kew, “Nat. of Otaheite” [exact origin unknown], 1813-1821 (holo:K [photo at BRI!]). Lithoxylon nitidum Baill. nom. illeg., nom. superfl. Etude Generale du groupe des Euphorbiacees: 590, (1858). Lithoxylon nitidum Mull.Arg. Euphorbiaceae-Hippomaneae. Prodromus Systematis Naturalis Regni Vegetabilis 15(2): 232, (1866). Actephila nitida (Baill.) Benth. & Hook.f. ex Drake nom. illeg., nom. superfl. Illustrationes florae insularum maris pacifici 7: 286, (1892). Actephila mooreana Baill.  Adansonia 6: 330, 366, (1866). Type: "C.Moore (1861), n. 211, Mount Lindsay, Richmond River (herb. F. Muell.!)."
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