Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Podocarpus dispermus C.T.White

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Leaves and female flowers. © CSIRO
Leaves fruit and receptacle. © Stanley Breeden
Receptacle, fruit and cross section. © W. T. Cooper
Fruit and receptacle. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO

White, C.T. (1933) Contributions from the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University 4: 10. Type: Gadgarra Reserve, Atherton Tableland, S. F. Kajewski 1192 (type; ripe seeds), 10 Aug.1929; holo: BRI; iso: A, ILL, NY.

Common name

Brown Pine; Broad Leaved Brown Pine; Pine, Brown; Pine, Broad Leaved Brown; Double-seeded Podocarp


Seldom exceeding 30 cm dbh. Bark very strong and fibrous when stripped. Subrhytidome layer almost purple.


Midrib raised on the upper surface of the leaf blade. Fine vein-like markings, running parallel with the midrib, visible on both the upper and lower surfaces. Leaf blades rather broad, about 2-3.5 cm wide, petioles short, about 0.3-0.5 cm long. Leaves usually alternate and not spirally arranged on the twigs.


Male cones about 40-50 x 3 mm, peduncle nil. Microsporophylls about 1 mm long.


Receptacle large and fleshy, about 27-30 x 14-30 mm, red when the fruit is ripe. Fruits about 17-20 x 12-13 mm. Seeds about 10-13 x 8-10 mm.


Cotyledons linear, about 30-40 x 1-2 mm. First pair of leaves elongate-elliptic. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade linear, apex acuminate, base attenuate, glabrous, midrib raised on the upper surface but no lateral venation visible. Cataphylls sometimes produced among the true leaves. Seed germination time 7 to 38 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, restricted to the Atherton Tableland, the foothills of the Bellenden Ker Range and Mt Bartle Frere. Altitudinal range from 40-720 m. Grows as an understory tree in well developed rain forest on a variety of sites.

Natural History & Notes

The spreading habit and dark green glossy leaves make this an excellent small tree for the garden. Also does well as a potted plant for indoor decoration.

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