Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Carissa scabra R.Br.

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Leaves and flowers. CC-BY Australian Tropical Herbarium

Brown, R. (1810) Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae : 468. Type: v.v.


Scrambling to much branched woody shrub to 1 m tall. Axillary spines 7-12 mm long, simple to tripartite.


Leaf blades thickly textured; 15-35 x 7-15 mm, margins revolute; upper surface dark green, scabrid; lower surface with sparse to dense indumentum; petioles 1.5-2 mm long producing a milky exudate when broken. Stipules spiny, 3-4 mm long.


Cyme up to 2 mm long; peduncle up to 2 mm long. Flowers 8-12 mm long, 5-6 mm diameter, scented; pedicels 2-3 mm long, glabrous. Sepals lanceolate, 3-3.2 x 0.7-0.9 mm, glabrous. Corolla tube 7-9 x 1.5-2 mm, with scattered to sparse hairs on outside, internally glabrous; lobes lanceolate, 2.7-2.9 x 0.9-1 mm covered in scattered hairs.Stamens inserted 3-3.2 mm from top of tube.


Fruit globose-ovoid, 12-15 mm, fleshy, with an apiculate tip, glossy black-purple when ripe.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in CYP and NEQ. Native species growing in rainforest, also in open woodland in rocky places on granite or sandstone.

Natural History & Notes

The fruit is edible with a tart taste (Forster 1992).

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