Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Polyalthia submontana (Jessup) B.Xue & R.M.K.Saunders subsp. submontana

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)

Xue, B., Su, Y.C.F., Thomas, D.C. & Saunders, R.M.K. (2012) Taxon 61(5): 1035. 


Seldom exceeding 30 cm dbh. Subrhytidome layer almost black. Oak grain in the wood and a corresponding pattern in the inner blaze.


Oak grain in the twigs. Leaf blades about 3.5-19 x 0.9-6 cm. Petiole 1-3.5 mm long. Lateral veins forming loops inside the blade margin. Oil dots visible with a lens. Twig bark strong and fibrous when stripped. Young twigs and terminal buds appressed hairy, glabrescent.


Flowers solitary, axillary, sessile or with stout pedicels 1.5 mm wide; bracts broadly ovate; sepals very broadly ovate, 2.5-3 mm long. Petals white-cream, crimson inside near base. Stamens 35-70, 1.5 mm long.


Fruit ellipsoidal, 12-16 mm long, black, stipe 1-5 mm long. Seeds 1 or 2.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to NEQ, occurs as scattered populations at Big Tableland, Mt Finnigan, Cedar Bay and from Daintree to Mossman Gorge. Altitudinal range from 40-1000 m. Grows as an understory shrub or small tree in well developed rain forest, more common on soils derived from metamorphic rocks.


Polyalthia submontana (Jessup) B.Xue & R.M.K.Saunders, Xue, B., Su, Y.C.F., Thomas, D.C. & Saunders, R.M.K. (2012), Taxon 61(5): 1035.  Haplostichanthus submontanus Jessup subsp. submontanus, Flora of Australia 2: 449 (2007).  Haplostichanthus submontanus Jessup, Flora of Australia 2: 449. Type: Catchment of Gap Creek NE of Mt Finnigan, Qld, 30 Nov. 1984, L.W.Jessup 632; holo: BRI.

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