Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Argophyllum cryptophlebum Zemann

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Leaves and Flowers. © A. Ford & F. Goulter
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
A. flowering branchlet x0.8. B. lamina margin x2. C. hair from upper leaf surface x60. © Queensland Government

Zemann, M. (1907) Annalen des k.k. Naturhistorischen Hofmuseums, Wien 22 : 283. Type: Sayer: Mt. Bellenden Ker, 1887, S. Johnson: Mt. Bartle-Frere 1891. Lectotype: Queensland. Cook District: Mt Bellenden Ker, in 1887, W.A. Sayer 84 (lecto: MEL 2288067; isolecto: MEL 2288065, MEL 2288066, W 10220).


Shrub 2–7 m high, often with decumbent stems. Hairs on new growth brown or rusty; hairs more than 10 cm from growing point brown or rusty.


Petiole 13-38 mm long; fully expanded lamina broadly-elliptic, ovate, or broadly ovate, 41-131 mm long, 21-61 mm wide, 1.5-2.9 times longer than wide; 5-7 lateral secondary veins on either side of midrib. Lamina apex usually acute, sometimes shortly acuminate; base cuneate, not oblique. Lamina margins denticulate, with teeth all about the same size, 7-14 on each side of the lamina, the teeth 0.3-0.8 mm long; margins sometimes entire, with teeth reduced to small glands. Upper surface of fully expanded lamina green, glabrous or sometimes with persisting T-shaped hairs 0.3-0.5 mm long. Lower surface of lamina white or rusty-brown from hairs, hairs appressed; secondary veins rusty, slightly raised; tertiary veins rusty or white, ± flush with indumentum.


Inflorescences terminal, paniculate cymose, 56-122 mm long, densely tomentose, primary axis 12-105 mm long, secondary branches 8-34 mm long; branching of inflorescence mostly monochasial, branches spreading at 30-60° from adjacent branch; bracts narrowly-deltate, 1.5-4 mm long. Pedicels 1-2 mm long; flowering hypanthium cupular, 2.5-3.3 mm diameter. Flowers about 7-8 mm diam., clothed in white and golden brown hairs. Calyx lobes 0.9-1.5 mm long; petals 1.9-2.5 mm long, white, corolla appendages white, 0.6-1.3 mm long, clothed in prostrate hairs on the outer surface but glabrous on the inner surface. Staminal filaments 0.8-1.1 mm long; anthers 0.35-0.6 mm long. Style 0.9-1.2 mm long; ovary 2-locular. Floral disk orange.


Fruit capsules with cupular hypanthium, 3-3.6 mm long, 3.3-4 mm diameter, calyx teeth 4, persistent at the apex. Seeds numerous and tiny, 0.55-0.65 mm long. Testa orange or rusty brown, reticulate. Embryo tiny, about 0.3 mm long.


Cotyledons +/- orbicular, about 2-2.5 mm diam. Midrib alone visible. First pair of leaves ovate, apex apiculate, both the upper and lower surfaces clothed in appressed hairs. First leaf margin entire, second leaf margin with 2 teeth, one on each side of the blade. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade ovate, apex acuminate and mucronate, base cuneate to obtuse, margin with 8-14 small serrulate teeth on each side. Lateral veins about 6-8 on each side of the midrib. All plant parts densely clothed in brown medifixed hairs. Lower surface of the leaf blade cream in colour. Seed germination time 26 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, occurring in the Cape Tribulation area, the Bellenden Ker - Bartle Frere massif, and on Bell Peak. Altitudinal range from 600-1500 m. Grows on granite, usually in stunted vegetation on the tops and upper slopes of mountains.

Argophyllum nitidum var. fulvum F.M.Bailey, The Queensland Flora 2: 533(1900), Type: Mount Bellenden Ker, W.A. Sayer; Mount Bartle Frere, S. Johnson.
RFK Code
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