Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Flindersia oppositifolia (F.Muell.) T.G.Hartley & Jessup

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Flowers [not vouchered]. © G. Sankowsky
Leaves and Flowers. © B. Gray
Fruit, dehisced and seeds. © W. T. Cooper
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

Hartley, T.G. & Jessup, L.W. (1983) Brunonia 5(1): 109.

Common name

Mountain Top Silkwood; Silkwood, Mountain; Mountain Silkwood


Rusty brown lenticels usually obvious on the base of the stem where the lateral roots arise.


Scattered oil dots visible with a lens. Oil dots visible on the underside of the leaf or leaflet blade rather than on the upper surface. Leaf or leaflet blades about 3-8 x 1.4-3.2 cm, rather thick, cracking and breaking in a straight line when bent. Midrib raised on the upper surface.


Inflorescence hairs simple. Sepals about 1 mm long. Petals about 2-2.5 mm long. Ovules 2 on each side of the placenta.


Capsules about 5.5-11.5 cm long, outer surface muricate with relatively long excrescences. Seeds winged at both ends, radicle lateral.


Cotyledons much wider than long, about 8-10 x 35-50 mm. Oil dots small, visible with a lens, only about the margin. First pair of leaves trifoliolate. At the tenth leaf stage: leaflet blades stalked, ovate, apex acuminate, base cuneate and slightly unequal-sided; oil dots absent. Seed germination time 8 to 9 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, restricted to Mt Bellenden Ker and Mt Bartle Frere. Altitudinal range from 1450-1550 m. Grows in well developed mountain rain forest and in short, stunted forest on windswept ridges.

Flindersia pimenteliana f. oppositifolia (F.Muell.) K.D.Scott, W.K.Harris & Playford, Austrobaileya 5: 668(2000). Hypsophila oppositifolia F.Muell., The Victorian Naturalist 9: 11(1893), Type: On Mount Bartle-Frere; Stephen Johnson. Flindersia unifoliolata T.G.Hartley, Journal of the Arnold Arboretum 50: 498(1969), Type: Queensland. COOK DISTRICT: Mt. Bellenden Ker, alt. 5200 ft., Sayer 136 (MEL holotype.).
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