Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Myrsine urceolata R.Br.

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Flowers. © CSIRO
Fruit. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO

Brown, R. (1810) Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae : 534. Type: Queensland, Endeavour River, Banks & Solander; holo: BM?.

Common name

Muttonwood, Variable; Variable Muttonwood


Can grow into a small tree but usually flowers and fruits as a shrub about 2-5 m tall.


Leaf blades elliptical or obovate, about 7-18 x 2.5-7 cm, petioles about 0.5-0.6 cm long. Oil dots readily visible with a lens, mainly clear and orbicular, streaky oil dots and red orbicular oil dots usually scattered. Margin recurved. Venation not readily visible, lateral veins about 10-16 on each side of the midrib.


Flowers predominantly 4-merous. Flowers pedicellate, pedicels about 3.5-6 mm long, produced on short burr-like structures on the twigs. Flowers about 5 x 1.5-2 mm (female flowers?). Sepals broadly ovate, about 1-1.5 x 1 mm, marked by clear streaky oil glands. Corolla tube longer than the lobes, lobes with streaky oil dots or glands. Anthers sessile on the inner surface of the corolla tube, pollen white. Ovary about 1 x 0.8 mm. Stigma small, capitate.


Fruits globular, about 3-4 mm diam. Calyx persistent at the base of the fruit. Calyx usually 4-lobed. Outer surface of the fruit marked by pale, orbicular and streaky oil glands. Seeds globose, about 3 mm diam. Embryo about 2 mm long. Cotyledons much shorter than but about as wide as the radicle.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Queensland (?), occurs in CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 500 m. Grows as an understory plant in the drier rain forests and monsoon forests particularly on Cape York Peninsula.

Rapanea urceolata (R.Br.) Mez, Das Pflanzenreich Heft 9: 356(1902). Rapanea sp. (Bloomfield V. Scarth-Johnson 223A), Names and Distribution of Queensland Plants, Algae & Lichens : 119(2002).
RFK Code
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