Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Capparis shanesiana F.Muell.

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Flower [not vouchered]. CC-BY: S. & A. Pearson.
Fruit [not vouchered]. CC-BY: S. & A. Pearson.

Mueller, F.J.H. von (1877), Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 10(86): 94. Type: "In virgultis "Brigalow-Scrubs" dictus pone urbem Rockhampton rara, O'Shanesy; ad Herbert's Creek, Bowman."


Shrub or small tree to 5 m tall. Stems and leaves with shortly spreading to minute stiff sandy or pale brown simple hairs.


Leaves simple, distichous, and alternate. Stipular spines stout and recurved, present or absent. Petioles about 4-20 mm long. Leaf blades mostly lanceolate to ovate or narrowly elliptic to elliptic, about 65-145 mm long, 20-52 mm wide  base cuneate to shallowly obtuse, margin entire not recurved, apex acute, acuminate often with mucro or shortly aristate. Venation with 5-7 lateral veins, midrib more or less flush, slightly sunken above towards base, raised below. Blade undersurface and petiole hispidulous (short stiff spreading hairs); sparsely hispidulous above, often concentrated along midrib. Leaf undersurface same colour as above or slightly darker reddish brown.


Inflorescence axillary or terminal, flowers solitary or in clusters. Flowers produced on pedicels about 9-30 mm long, aroma if any not known. Sepals 4 (2+2), an inner pair and an outer pair, 14-22 mm long, 11-15 mm wide, the outer sepals ribbed and hairy, the inner sepals not ribbed, glabrous or hairy. Petals about 20-40 mm long,  c. 15 mm wide, hairy at base. Stamens c. 90, staminal filaments long. Gynophore with an ovary situated on an 47-90 mm stalk. Ovules not seen.


Fruits about 5 cm diam. Globose, wrinkled. Seeds not known.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NEQ (one record from Undara lava tubes) and CEQ. Predominantly found in inland central Queensland in the Bowen Basin region. Usually collected from more open communities and occasionally in dry vine thickets.

Natural History & Notes

This species is very similar to Capparis mitchelii and is differentiated in Hewson (1982) as leaves more than 6.5 cm long in C. shanesiana and leaves less than 6.5 cm long C. mitchellii.

Busbeckea shanesiana F.Muell. Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 10(86): 94 (1877).
RFK Code


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