Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition
Aristolochia australopithecurus (Mich.J.Parsons) Buchwalder & Wanke
Buchwalder, K. et al (2014) Australian Systematic Botany 27(1): 50.
Cairns Birdwing Butterfly plant
A slender vine not exceeding a stem diameter of 2 cm.
Leaf blades about 10-26 x 2.5-9.5 cm, petioles about 1.5-3.5 cm long, often curved and acting like tendrils. Reticulate veins very prominent on the lower surface of the leaf blade. Lower surface of the leaf blade clothed in short pale hairs mainly along the midrib and main lateral veins. Hairs do not enable the leaves to cling to clothing.
Pedicels about 18 mm long, ovary (hypanthium) about 11 mm long. Perianth tube sinuous, about 30 x 9 mm, slightly constricted below the throat and then flaring to 18 mm diam. Perianth lobes about 16 mm long, fused together at the apex by maroon filaments up to 30-40 x 1.5 mm. Outer surface of the perianth clothed in pink and purple hooked hairs. Inner surface of the perianth clothed in hairs above the constriction +/- glabrous below the constriction. Inner surface of the perianth tube deep purple on the margin near the apex, otherwise yellow or purple. Stamens fused together to form a structure around the style. Ovary 6-locular. Ovules numerous in each locule.
Cotyledons thick and fleshy, +/- triangular. First pair of true leaves cordate or narrowly cordate, base sometimes sagittate. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade about 12 x 4 cm, petiole about 1.5-2 cm long, base swollen. Leaf blade elliptic, apex acute to acuminate, base auriculate. Midrib raised on the upper surface. Lateral veins about 4-6 on each side of the midrib. Both the upper and lower leaf blade surfaces clothed in short hairs. Reticulate veins conspicuous. Oil dots quite large, readily visible with a lens. Raised lines extend from the base of the petiole across the stem. Seed germination time 101 to 103 days.
Pararistolochia australopithecurus Mich.J.Parsons, Botanical Journal Linnean Society 120: 227 (1996). Type: Queensland, State Forest Reserve 310, 8 Nov. 1977, B. Gray 331. Holo: QRS. Aristolochia sp. (Woopen Creek, G. Sankowsky 586 & N. Sankowsky, Queensland Vascular Plants : 26(1994). Aristolochia sp. (Bartle Frere), Climbing Plants of Australia : 154(1988). Aristolochia sp. (Woopen Creek, G. Sankowsky 586 & N. Sankowsky0, Queensland Vascular Plants : 22(1997).