Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Notelaea sp. Elcho Island (C.R.Dunlop 7597)

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flowers. © Australian Plant Image Index (APII). Photographer: M. Fagg.
Leaves and fruit. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

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Common name

Olive, Large Mock; Axe-breaker; Long Leaved Olive; Large Leaved Olive; Large Mock Olive; Olive, Long Leaved; Olive, Large Leaved


Often flowers and fruits as a shrub but may attain the dimensions of a small tree, not exceeding 30 cm dbh.


Leaf blades about 4-18 x 0.8-2 cm. Lateral veins depressed on the upper surface but midrib raised on the upper surface. Lateral veins forming loops well inside the blade margin.


Calyx glabrous, about 0.5-1 mm long, with four +/- triangular lobes. Corolla lobes about 1.5-2.5 mm long. Ovary flask-shaped, about 1.2-1.5 mm long. Style about 0.5 mm long with two short stigmatic lobes.


Fruits ovoid, about 10-16 x 8-12 mm. Endocarp hard, pointed ovoid, about 8-12 x 5-8 mm and about 0.3-0.5 mm thick. Seeds about 5 mm diam. Cotyledons about 2 x 1 mm. Radicle about 1 mm long.


Cotyledons elongate-elliptic, about 7-10 x 2 mm. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade narrow elliptic to ovate, apex acute, base attenuate or cuneate, glabrous, midrib and main lateral veins raised on the upper surface, forming loops inside the blade margin. Cataphylls present among the true leaves. Seed germination time 66 to 335 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NT, CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 760 m. Grows in beach forest, more seasonal rain forest, open forest and rain forest. May also occur in Malesia and the Pacific islands.

Natural History & Notes

Food plant for the larval stages of the Eastern Flat Butterfly. Common & Waterhouse (1981).

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