Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Neololeba atra (Lindl.) Widjaja

Palm, pandan or cycad
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO

Widjaja, E.A. (1997) Reinwardtia 11: 114.

Common name

Bamboo; Cape Bamboo; Bamboo, Cape


Plants consist of a number of stems about 2-4 cm diam. growing in clumps and attaining a height of 6-7 m but often much smaller.


Leaf blade margin armed with microscopic teeth visible with a x10 lens. Leaf blades about 30 x 6-7 cm or larger, venation fine, longitudinal and parallel. Ligules with fimbriate margins.


Flowering branches about 50-110 cm long, branched at the lower nodes. Spikelets produced in tufts at the nodes. Spikelets flat, up to 10 mm long. Anthers about 4.5 mm long. Ovary gradually tapering into a flat style with three stigmas.


Features not available.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 200 m. Grows as an understory plant in gallery forest and other types of rain forest. Often forms a dense layer of tangled stems both living and dead which is difficult to traverse even with the aid of a brushhook. Also occurs in New Guinea, the Moluccas, northern Sulawesi and the Philippines.

Natural History & Notes

An attractive clumping species, not yet well known, which has potential in horticulture. The stems have numerous uses.

The dead canes of this species are useful when lighting billy fires even in wet weather.

Bambusa atra Lindl., Penny Cyclopaedia 3: 357(1815), Type: Ambon, Caju Poeti, Robinson 33, Epi: K, L, BO. Gigantochloa novoguineensis Rendle in Gibbs, Dutch NW. New Guinea : 199(1917), Type: Manokwari, Gibbs 6270a; Holo: K, Iso: BM. Arundinaria cobonii F.M.Bailey, Queensland Agric. Jour. 20: 71(1908), Type: Head of the Starcke River, J. J. Cobon; holo: BRI?. Arundarbor tenuis nigra Rumph., Hb. Amb. 4: t. 1(1743). Bambusa lineata Munro, Trans. Linn. Soc. 16: 118(1868). Bambusa forbesii (Ridl.) Holttum, Kew Bulletin 21: 271(1966). Dendrocalamus forbesii Ridl., Journ. Bot. 24: 360(1886), Type: Papua, Sogere, Forbes 153: holo: SING, Iso: BM?, L?.
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