Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Cryptocarya cercophylla W.E.Cooper

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flower buds [not vouchered]. © G. Sankowsky
Flowers [not vouchered]. © G. Sankowsky
Fruit. CC-BY: A. Ford
Leaves and Fruit. CC-BY: A. Ford
Leaves [not vouchered]. © G. Sankowsky
A. stem; B. leaf; C. inflorescence with open flower, buds, bracts on pedicels; D. flower; E. flower with 3 tepals removed; F. staminode; G. anther (inner whorl); H. anther (outer whorl); I. gland head and stalk. ©: Queensland Government.
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon and 1st leaf stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO

Cooper, W.E. (2013) Austrobaileya 9(1): 76-79. Type: Australia: Queensland. Cook District: Timber Reserve 1230, Bartle Frere, Boonjee Logging Area [east of Malanda]. 17 November 1994, R. Jensen 72.


Small tree to 10 m, not exceeding 30 cm dbh and usually much smaller. Vascular rays in the wood readily visible to the naked eye and extending into the bark. Close inspection of these large rays with a lens indicates that they are aggregations of the finer vascular rays.


Leaf blades about 5.3-10 x 2.2-4.5 cm, drawn out into a long caudate drip tip (0.8-2 x 0.13-0.2 cm) at the apex. Midrib depressed on the upper surface. Lateral veins forming loops inside the margin. Oil dots very small, visible with a lens.


Inflorescence very short, not exceeding the leaves, 4-7-flowered. Flowers without any obvious odour. Tepals 6, about 1.2-1.7 mm long, completely glabrous on the outer surface but pubescent on the inner surface. Perianth tube sericeous on the inner surface. Ovary and style glabrous. Vestigial styles often present.


Fruits ovoid, about 16-20 x 10-14.5 mm, ribbed, red to shiny black at maturity, flesh green. Seeds drawn out at the apex, about 16-19 x 8-10 mm, outer surface longitudinally ribbed. Cotyledons white.


First pair of leaves ovate, about 34-38 x 16-18 mm, green on the underside. Apex with a long drip tip. First pair of leaves alternate but sometimes close to subopposite. Seed germination time 143 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, known only from collections made in the Wooroonooran National Park, Boonjee. Altitude 580-680 m. Grows as an understory tree in well developed rain forest on steep slopes which are naturally unstable and prone to slippage. Probably favoured by such disturbance. A rare species.


Cryptocarya sp. Boonjee (B.Hyland 25794RFK).  Cryptocarya sp. Boonjie (L.W.Jessup+ 319).

RFK Code
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