Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Alyxia stellata (J.R.Forst. & G.Forst.) Roem. & Schult.

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

Roemer, J.J. & Schultes, J.A. (1819) Systema Vegetabilium 4: 439.

Common name

Climbing Chain Fruit


Shrub or climber. Stems to several metres; buds and stems hairless; stipules several in leaf axils; milky latex visible in young cut stems and petioles.


Leaves simple, stiff, opposite and decussate or in whorls of 3 to 6; lamina 10-70mm by 10-25mm, narrow lanceolate to broad elliptic; apex acuminate to retuse, hairless; petioles 1-5mm; upper surface dark green; lower surface paler and yellow green; pinnately veined with 16-25 main laterals each side of midvein, faain on upper surface, obscure on lower surface.


Flowers scented, in reduced axillary dichasial cymes of 2-8 flowers, bisexual, actinomorphic; petals 5, white, tubular for 7mm; lobes 3-5mm, spreading, twisted; stamens 5, included in corolla tube, free from style head; gynoecium of 2 carpels, free except for fused style; ovaries superior; style head cylindrical, divided.


Fleshy drupe, single or in a chain of 2-4 globose segments 4-10mm in diameter, orange to red, a single stone in each segment.


Not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs naturally in CEQ, from near Mackay southwards to Hervey Bay. Altitudinal range quite small, near sea level. Grows in rain forest. Also widespread over the Pacific Islands.


Gynopogon stellatus J.R.Forst. & G.Forst., Characteres Generum Plantarum Edn. 1: 18 (1775). Type: J.R. & G. Forster s.n. (Lecto P, designated by Boiteau (1981), step 1, and Fosberg (1993), step 2). Pulassarium stellatum (J.R.Forst. & G.Forst.) Kuntze, Revisio Generum Plantarum 2: 417 (1891).  Alyxia obtusifolia R.Br., Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae : 470 (1810), Type: Queensland, Port Curtis, Aug. - Sept. 1802, R. Brown; lecto: BM; iso: BM, CANB. Fide Forster (1992), Aust. Syst. Bot. 5: 570. Pulassarium obtusifolium (R.Br.) Kuntze, Revisio Generum Plantarum 2: 417 (1891).  Alyxia thozetii F.Muell., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 10(86): 103 (1877). Type: Grown in Muellerville from seed dropped by birds ['In Australia orientali tropica'], 966 (lecto): MEL223094. 

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