Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Mallotus dispersus P.I.Forst.

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Fruit. © R.L. Barrett
Leaf and fruit. © R.L. Barrett
Leaf base. © R.L. Barrett
Leaf base. © R.L. Barrett
Habit, leaves and fruit. © R.L. Barrett
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

Forster, P.I. (1999) Austrobaileya 5: 465. Type: Queensland, Muddy Bay, Cape York, 25 Jun. 1994,P. I. Forster PIF15304; holo: BRI; iso: A, BISH, CANB, DNA, K, L, MEL, NSW, QRS.


Usually not exceeding 30 cm dbh. Blaze odour sometimes resembling that of rotten tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum).


Leaf blades about 7-15 x 6-12 cm, underside clothed in stellate hairs and small pale yellowish glands which are visible with a lens. About 4-8 flat glands visible on the upper surface of the base of the leaf blade near its junction with the petiole. Small oil dots visible with a lens.


Floral bracts smaller than the flowers at anthesis. Outer surface of the tepals densely clothed in stellate hairs. Ovary densely stellate hairy.


Capsules densely clothed in brown, stellate hairs. Seeds +/- globular, about 5-6 mm diam. Testa smooth.


Cotyledons obovate to almost orbicular, about 15 mm long, hairy on the upper surface. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade cordate, both the upper and lower surfaces clothed in pale and white stellate hairs, numerous very small clear glands on the undersurface of the leaf blade; petiole and terminal bud densely clothed in whitish stellate hairs; stipules very small, densely clothed in hairs. Seed germination time 45 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in WA, NT, CYP and the very northern part of NEQ. Altitudinal range quite small, from near sea level to 100 m. Grows in monsoon forest and drier rain forest. Also occurs in New Guinea.

Mallotus didymochryseus Airy Shaw, Kew Bulletin 20: 40(1967), Type: PAPUA. .. Mt. Lawes Forest, Central Division, 9 20 S., 147 15 E., alt. 150 m., scattered in seasonally dry evergreen rain forest.
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