Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Rhodomyrtus trineura subsp. capensis Guymer

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)
Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
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Flower and buds. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

Guymer, G.P. (1991) Austrobaileya 3(3): 378. Type: Queensland. COOK DISTRICT, McIlwraith Ra., T.R. 14, Leo Creek road, 13 45S, 143 20E, September 1975, B.Hyland 8383 (holo: BRI; iso: QRS.

Common name

Ironwood, Rusty; Rusty Ironwood; Malletwood


Seldom exceeding 30 cm dbh. Dead bark layer very thin, finely fissured and flaky.


Leaf blades about 5-12 x 1.5-3.7 cm. Young shoots and younger leaf-bearing twigs densely clothed in reddish hairs. Midrib depressed on the upper surface. A few scattered oil dots visible to the naked eye but numerous oil dots visible with a lens.


Inflorescence not exceeding the leaves but usually longer than the petioles. Calyx lobes about 3-4 mm long, pubescent on both the inner and outer surfaces. Petals +/- orbicular, about 8 mm diam., pubescent on the outer surface but almost glabrous on the inner surface. Ovary apex and disk pubescent. Stigma capitate.


Infructescence not exceeding the leaves. Fruits finely hairy, calyx lobes persistent at the apex. Fruits +/- globular or depressed globular, about 10-12 mm diam. Seeds flattened, about 2 x 2 mm. Testa textured with a +/- radial pattern. Embryo U-shaped.


Cotyledons ovate, about 3-3.5 mm long. At the tenth leaf stage: leaf blade +/- elliptic, apex acuminate, base cuneate, both the upper and lower surfaces hairy, particularly on young leaves; oil dots sparse, visible with a lens; leaf blade 3-veined; petiole and stem hairy. Seed germination time 32 to 49 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Queensland, occurs in CYP and NEQ. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 500 m. Grows in lowland and upland rain forest. This species is favoured by disturbance and is a characteristic component of rain forest regrowth.

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