Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Anisomeles moschata R.Br.

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flowers. © CSIRO
Leaves and flowers. © CSIRO

Brown, R. (1810) Prodromus florae Novae Hollandiae: 503. Lectotype: [Australia: Queensland. PORT CURTIS DISTRICT"] Keppel Bay, 9 August 1802, R.Brown [Bennett Number 2357] (lecto: BM 001041069; isolecto: CANB 278977, E 00649579, P 04358989)."


Herb or shrub to 2.5 m tall. Stem hairs sparse to dense, curved retrorse, without long hairs; glandular hairs absent; sessile glands present.


Leaf bearing stems 4-angled. Leaves on stems ovate to elliptic, 11-100 mm long x 6-43 mm wide; margins crenate, dentate or serrate; base obtuse or broadly cuneate; petioles 4-22 mm long; leaf blade upper and lower surfaces with erect or curved eglandular hairs, dense to moderately dense, sessile glands present.


Floral bracts leaf-like but gradually becoming smaller, elliptic ovate , 8-22 mm long x 3-9 mm wide, consistently longer than the inflorescence clusters (verticils). Inflorescence clusters spaced along rachis, often branched from near base, with 2-10 flowers per axis (monochasium). Corolla 2-lipped. Corolla tube longer than or equal to calyx. Corolla platform (flattened upper side of the large lower corolla lip) without hairs.


Fruiting calyx 6.2-8.6 mm long; on the outer surface with eglandular hairs of same size, sessile glands present; on the inner surface with a ring of hairs near the middle or glabrous. Calyx persistent, enclosing the nutlets. Nutlets ellipsoid, about 1.8-2.1 long.


Seed germination time 435 days. Cotyledons orbicular, about 6-7 mm diam., undersurface hairy. First pair of true leaves elliptic to ovate, margins toothed. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade about 50 x 26 mm with about 7 or 8 large, rounded teeth (crenate) on each side, petiole about 20-25 mm long, channelled on the upper surface. Stem, petiole and both the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf blade densely clothed in curved or retrorse hairs. Lower surface of the leaf blade with numerous pale-coloured globular glands. All seedling parts emitting a strong odour when crushed. Stems square in transverse section.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NEQ and CEQ, and southwards to south eastern Queensland. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 1400 m in NEQ. Usually grows in sandy soils in open eucalypt woodland, forest and wet sclerophyll forest and also found in semi-deciduous vine forest and on the edge of rainforest.

Natural History & Notes

Description adapted from A.R.Bean (2015).

RFK Code


Copyright © CSIRO 2020, all rights reserved.