Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Ripogonum album R.Br.

Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flowers. © CSIRO
Leaves and Flowers. © CSIRO
Leaves and fruits. © CSIRO
Fruit, side views, transverse and longitudinal sections. © W. T. Cooper
Stem and leaves. © CSIRO
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, hypogeal germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO
Vine stem bark and vine stem transverse section. © CSIRO

Brown, R. (1810) Prodromus Florae Novae Hollandiae : 293. Type: NSW, Hawkesbury River, Port Jackon, R. Brown; syn: MEL.

Common name

White Supplejack


Vine stem diameters to 2-3 cm recorded.


Leaf blades about 6-11.5 x 2-4 cm, petioles about 0.7-1.5 cm long. Petioles usually swollen about the middle and thicker at that point than at the junction with the leaf blade. Leaf blades rather hard and leathery. Vascular strands scattered all over transverse sections of the twigs.


Flowers conspicuously perfumed. 'Sepals' pale green, small and inconspicuous, about 1-2 x 1 mm. Petals about 4-7 x 3 mm. Stamens 6, anthers about 4 mm long, filaments about 0.5 mm long. Pollen white. Stigma 3-lobed.


Fruits globular or depressed globular, about 11-15 x 17-18 mm, stalks slender. Seeds variable in size and shape, about 8-11 diam. Embryo white, about 3-3.5 x 1.5 mm, held in the endosperm just beneath the surface of the testa. Endosperm white to translucent, firm, +/- granular or cellular.


Cataphylls 2-4, about 10-16 mm long are usually produced before the first true leaf. First true leaf ovate, leaf blade about 5 x 3 cm, apex acuminate, base +/- truncate, petiole about 15 mm long. Leaf blade 3-veined with the major veins extending to the apex, two other minor veins extend from the base just inside the blade margin. Stems and petioles clothed in short brown hairs which are shed. At the tenth leaf stage: plant usually multistemmed with the stems arising from a rhizome. Leaf blades up to 11-12 x 4-5 cm, apex acuminate, base attenuate, petiole 2 cm or more long, swollen and clothed in short erect hairs just prior to its junction with the stem. Leaf blades predominantly 3-veined, sometimes 5-veined. Seed germination time 25 to 49 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NEQ, CEQ and southwards as far as Victoria. Altitudinal range in NEQ from 500-1400 m. Grows mainly in upland rain forest. Also occurs in New Guinea.

Ripogonum album R.Br. var. album, Flora Australiensis 7: 9(1878). Ripogonum papuanum C.T.White, Proceedings of the Royal Society of Queensland 34: 18(1922), Type: New Gunea, Aug. 1918, Between Kubnunah and Fofofofo, C. T. White 687; holo:BRI. Ripogonum mooreanum F.Muell., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 1: 44(1858), Type: In Australia orientali subtropica detexit amic. Carolus Moore, horti bot. Sydney. Director. Ripogonum album var. leptostachya Benth., Flora Australiensis 7: 9(1878), Type: Queensland. Rockingham Bay, Dallachy. Ripogonum danesii Domin, Repertorium Specierum Novarum Regni Vegetabilis 10 : 60(1911), Type: Queensland: Bellenden Ker, Jan. 1910, K. Domin & J. V. Danes; holo: PR.
RFK Code
Copyright © CSIRO 2020, all rights reserved.