Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Melodinus forbesii Fawc.

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Flowers. © CSIRO
Leaves and Flowers. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Vine stem bark. © CSIRO

Fawcett, W. (1885) Nat. Wand. : 510. Type: Timor [Bibicucu, Rajahs of. - camp 3000 ft, iv. 1883], H.O.Forbes 3708; holo: BM.


Vine stem diameters to 3 cm recorded. Milky exudate produced from the pith but not from the bark.


Twigs and petioles produce a milky exudate. Leaf blades about 7-15 x 3-5 cm, petioles about 0.3-0.6 cm long, grooved on the upper surface. Intramarginal vein located close to the margin of the leaf blade or the lateral veins forming loops just inside the leaf blade margin.


Sepals about 1.5-2.5 x 1.5-2 mm. Left hand edge of each corolla lobe overlapping the next lobe. Corolla tube about 7-13 mm long, lobes about 5-8 mm long. A ring of overlapping, lobed glands present on the inner surface of the corolla tube close to the throat. Corolla tube clothed in pale, translucent hairs on both the inner and outer surfaces. Ovary about 1 mm long, Style about 1 mm long, stigma about 1-1.5 mm long. Stamens attached close to the base of the corolla tube.


Fruits globular, about 4-6 cm diam.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in CYP and NEQ. Known only from a few collections. Most of these collections come from the Claudie River area. Other collections from the McIlwraith Range and from the Cooktown area may mark extensions of the known range of this species. Altitudinal range probably quite small, from near sea level to 100 m. Grows in well developed gallery forest. Also occurs in Malesia.

Natural History & Notes

Indications to date suggest that this is a rare species in Australia. Unfortunately, rarity is no defence against predation. Both fruiting collections made to date have fruits completely hollowed out by parrots(?), rats(?) with not a single seed remaining intact.

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