Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Indagator fordii Halford

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Flowers [not vouchered]. © G. Sankowsky
Flower. © CSIRO
Leaves and Flowers. © CSIRO
Fruit. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO

Halford, D.A. (2002) Austrobaileya 6: 337. Type: Queensland, Klondike Mine Road, 1 Dec. 1995, B. Gray 6455; holo: BRI; iso: QRS.


Grows into a small tree. Blaze conspicuously layered and emitting an odour like that of peas (Pisum sativum) or beans (Phaseolus vulgaris).


Twig bark strong and fibrous when stripped. Both the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf blade, twigs and terminal buds clothed in stellate hairs. Stipules linear, caducous, about 5 mm long, clothed in stellate hairs. Leaf blades about 5.5-12.5 x 4.5-10 cm, margins sparsely toothed and sometimes with one to two coarse lobes. Petioles about 2.5-4.5 cm long. No obvious duct in the twig pith.


All inflorescence parts clothed in stellate hairs. Flowers about 12 mm diam., clothed in stellate hairs outside, glabrous on the inner surface, tube about 2-2.5 mm long, lobes about 2-2.3 mm long. Petals obovate, about 8-9 x 5 mm. Staminodes white, broader than the staminal filaments. Stamens 25. Staminal filaments about 3-5.5 mm long, slightly fused together at the base. Pollen white. Ovary densely clothed in erect heirs. Style about 5 mm long. Stigma terminal. Ovules 4 per locule.


Overall dimensions of the fruit about 3 x 4-4.5 cm, including the trichomes or bristles. Bristles to 1 cm long. Seeds about 5-9 per fruit, each seed about 4-5 mm long, about 7 mm long including the sarcotesta or aril-like attachment. Testa tough and hard, mottled brown and cream. Endosperm hard. Embryo white.


Cotyledons suborbicular, about 25 x 20 mm, slightly cordate at the base. First pair of leaves with irregularly dentate and slightly lobed margins. Stem, petiole and terminal bud sparsely clothed in stellate hairs. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade +/- triangular, margin usually with one lobe on each side and a number of teeth on each side. Venation palmate. Stipules linear, about 2-3 mm long, hairy. Stem, petiole and both the upper and lower surfaces of the leaf blades sparsely clothed in stellate hairs. Bark strong and fibrous when stripped. Root bark orange. Seed germination time 13 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Probably endemic to CYP, known from collections made at the southern end of the McIlwraith Range and on Muralag Island (Prince of Wales Island) in Torres Strait. Altitudinal range from 300-400 m. Grows in monsoon forest or rather dry rain forest.

Commersonia sp. (Klondike BH 25863RFK), Australian Tropical Rain Forest Trees & Shrubs : (1999).
RFK Code
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