Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Alectryon diversifolius (F.Muell.) S.T.Reynolds

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Leaf and flowers. CC-BY: APII, ANBG.
Flowers. CC-BY: APII, ANBG.

Reynolds, S.T. (1987) Austrobaileya 2(4): 335.

Common name

Scrub Boonaree; Holly Bush


A shrub or small tree to 4m; bark greyish, rough throughout; new growth reddish; buds and young stems with short spreading hairs; stems becoming hairless.


Leaves simple, alternate or clustered on short lateral branches; petiole very short, 2-4 mm long, hairless . Lleaf blade very variable, stiff and leathery, narrow-oblong or narrow-elliptical, 1.5 - 6 cm long, 0.5 - 1.5 cm wide; margin entire or with few lobes with sharp spines at the tips (juvenile leaves somewhat lobed, pinnatifid); pinnately veined, with 8-11 pairs of main laterals, distinct both surfaces; domatia absent; apex obtuse to spinose; base long-tapered; hairless.


Inflorescence axillary, flowers solitary or few in clusters; functionally unisexual and monoecious, 3-3.5 mm diam. Calyx shallowly 5-lobed, white, yellow, green or red; petals absent. Male flowers with 6-8 stamens strongly exserted, ovary rudimentary; female flowers with superior ovary of 2 -4 locules  and staminodes, ovules 1 per locule.


Fruit a dry to leathery, capsule, unlobed and globose or with 2 lobes (locules), 10 -14 mm diameter. Fruit dehiscent, each lobe splitting to release one black-brown globose seed 4.5 mm diameter, with a red to orange cupular aril. Aril granular, fleshy, partly covering seed to about halfway.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in CEQ and southwards as far as northern New South Wales. Altitudinal range from 100 to 640 m. Grows in vine thickets and in brigalow communities.


Heterodendrum diversifolium F.Muell., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 1(3): 46 (1858), Type: "In virgultis sic dictis "Brigalow Scrub." Australiae orientalis tropicae et subtropicae.".  Nephelium diversifolium (F.Muell.) F.Muell., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 10(85): 82 (1876).

RFK Code


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