Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Gossia retusa N.Snow & Guymer

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Flower. © CSIRO
Leaves and Flowers. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

Snow, N. & Guymer, G.P. (2003) Systematic Botany Monographs 65: 79. Type: Qld, Mapoon, S of Port Musgrave, 11 deg 59, 142 deg 52, 27 Dec 1980, A. Morton AM-1007; Holo: BRI; Iso: QRS.

Common name



Flowers and fruits as a shrub 1-4 m tall, but also grows into a small tree. Stem often somewhat twisted and gnarled. Bark pale, smooth or coarsely flaky like Guava (Psidium guajava).


Dried leaves have a faint clove (Syzygium aromaticum) odour. Leaf blades about 1.6-3 x 1-2 cm, petioles very short, about 1-1.5 mm long. Leaf blade margin recurved, particularly on dried leaves. Venation difficult to distinguish on either the upper or lower leaf blade surfaces. Oil dots quite numerous, visible with a lens on both the upper and lower surfaces. Young twigs 4-angled or shortly 4-winged.


Flowers about 10 mm diam. on pedicels about 8-11 mm long. Calyx lobes about 2 mm long. Petals concave, +/- orbicular, about 2.5 mm diam, margins fimbriate. Very small glands or appendages present between the calyx lobes, one gland between each pair. Stamens about 4 mm long. Ovules 10 per locule. Style about 4 mm long, base hairy.


Fruits globose, about 6-7 mm diam., calyx lobes incurved, persistent at the apex. Pedicels about 8 mm long. Seeds about 4 mm long. Embryo gland-dotted, coiled with the cotyledons at the centre of the spiral.


Cotyledons sessile, about 3 x 0.5 mm, apex acuminate. Oil dots restricted to the margin. Cotyledonary stipules present. First pair of leaves ovate, apex retuse with a short mucro. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade shortly and broadly elliptic, apex distinctly retuse. Midrib distinctly raised on the upper surface. Oil dots visible to the naked eye but much more obvious with a lens. Stipules or stipule-like glands visible with a lens. Stem 4-angled with a pair of narrow wings decurrent from each petiole. Seed germination time 18 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Probably endemic to Queensland, occurs in CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 30 m. Grows in monsoon forest and vine thickets usually on sand dunes close to the sea.

Austromyrtus sp. (Cape Flattery LJW 13537), : ().
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