Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Synoum glandulosum (Sm.) A.Juss. subsp. glandulosum

Shrub (woody or herbaceous, 1-6 m tall)
Click/tap on images to enlarge
Flower. © G. Sankowsky
Flowers. © G. Sankowsky
Flowers. CC-BY: APII, ANBG.
Leaves and inflorescences. CC-BY: APII, ANBG.
Dehiscing fruit. © G. Sankowsky
Fruits. CC-BY: APII, ANBG.
Leaves. © G. Sankowsky

Mabberley, D.J. (1998), Notes on Australian Meliaceae. Telopea 8(1): 48

Common name

Scentless Rosewood, Bastard Rosewood.


Shrub or tree 4-20 m; bark rough, irregularly scaly, sometimes with small buttresses and often suckering. Young stems hairy, becoming hairless with age.


Leaves compound, alternate. New growth reddish. Stipules absent. Petiole 2-6 cm long. Leaflets 5-9 (occasionally 3 or 11), opposite, pinnately compound, imparipinnate (leaves ending with a terminal leaflet). Stalk of the terminal leaflet generally longer than those of the lateral leaflets; lateral petiolules 1-3 mm long, terminal petiolule 1-15 mm long. Leaflet blade oblanceolate, narrowly obovate, oblong or elliptic, 2-13.5 cm long, 1.5-4.5 cm wide, base cuneate or attenuate, sometimes asymmetric, margins entire ± undulate/sinuate, apex acuminate, sometimes acute. Lateral veins 5-11 pairs. Domatia present as small hairy tufts. Surfaces hairless or only very sparsely hairy. Oil dots obscure and very small.


Inflorescences axillary, paniculate, much shorter than the leaves. Pedicels 3-6 mm long. Flowers apparently unisexual and plants dioecious, however well developed rudimentary parts in flowers give the appearance of bisexual flowers, actinomorphic, usually 4 merous (rarely 5), white to pale pink, sweetly scented. Sepals free or only shortly fused at base ± deltoid, c. 0.5 mm long. Petals free, elliptic, 4-6 mm long. Stamens usually 8 (-10), fused into a cup-like tube, 3-5 mm long, lobed at apex, anthers partly exserted from tube. Disk obscure; ovary superior, pubescent, 2 or 3-locular, style short, 2-2.5 mm long with discoid stigma, terminal and peltate.


Fruit leathery to fleshy, a capsule, 3-lobed, 1-1.5 cm long, 1.2-2.7 cm wide, reddish or pinkish fawn, usually 3-valved, glabrous. Seeds 2 or 3; 12-13 mm long, 7-8 mm diam.; aril fleshy, red, completely or partly covering seed. Cotyledons green, folded lengthways.


Cotyledons fleshy, shallowly reniform, about 10-15 mm wide, apex rounded, base cordate, venation obscure. Features not available for 10th leaf stage.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NEQ, CEQ and southwards to south eastern New South Wales. Common in most kinds of rainforest on margins and in gullies in sclerophyll forest.

Natural History & Notes
Synoum glandulosum subsp. paniculosum (Northern Scentless Rosewood) occurs in north Qld from Eungella to Windsor Tableland. It differs from S. glandulosum subsp. glandulosum by the longer inflorescences and the usually 5-merous flowers. This profile information and associated coding has been adapted from Mabberley (2011; 2013) and Harden et al. (2014). The flowers of this genus are reported to be mostly unisexual, however flowers inspected appear bisexual.
Trichilia glandulosa Sm., The Cyclopaedia 36: (1817), Type: "Native of New South Wales, near Port Jackson." Synoum glandulosum (Sm.) A.Juss. Memoires du Museum d'Histoire Naturelle 19: 227, t. 4. (1832). Synoum glandulosum (Sm.) A.Juss. var. glandulosum. Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 5(37): 145 (1866).
RFK Code
Copyright © CSIRO 2020, all rights reserved.