Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Sphenostemon lobosporus (F.Muell.) L.S.Sm.

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Fruit, side view, cross section and seed. © W. T. Cooper
Scale bar 10mm. © CSIRO
Cotyledon stage, epigeal, durian germination. © CSIRO
10th leaf stage. © CSIRO

Smith, L.S. (1957) Proc. Roy. Soc. Queensland 68: 43.

Common name

Beech, Feather; Feather Beech; Oak, Sarsaparilla; Sarsaparilla Oak


Oak grain in the wood and a similar pattern in the inner blaze. Faint liniment or sarsaparilla odour in the blaze. Lenticels long and fairly broad, tending to form vertical lines.


Fine oak grain in the twigs. Leaves often clustered in whorls on the twigs. Leaf blades about 8-16 x 2.5-4 cm.


Inflorescence about 10-20 mm long, shorter than the leaves. Tepals obovate-oblong, about 3.8-6 x 2.5-3.5 mm. Anthers sub-sessile, about 3.5-5.5 x 0.8-1.5 mm. Ovary compressed ovoid, about 2.5-3.5 mm long. Style very short or absent.


Fruits ellipsoid, about 17-18 x 9-14 mm. Seed enclosed in a thick hard endocarp, seed + endocarp about 10 x 4.5-7 mm. Embryo small and inconspicuous, about 1 x 0.4 mm. Cotyledons small and inconspicuous, no wider than the radicle.


Cotyledons linear, about 10 x 2 mm. First pair of leaves +/- orbicular, margin irregularly dentate. At the tenth leaf stage: leaves elliptic, apex acute, acuminate or mucronate, base cuneate, leaf blade upper surface glabrous, lower surface hairy, marginal teeth peg-like. Seed germination time 231 to 794 days.

Distribution and Ecology

Endemic to Queensland, occurs in NEQ and CEQ. Altitudinal range from 500-1200 m. Grows in well developed upland and mountain rain forest.

Natural History & Notes

Seeds eaten by native rats. Cooper & Cooper (1994).

Phlebocalymna lobospora F.Muell., Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 9: 151(1875), Type: Prope Rockinghams Bay; Dallachy.
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