Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Tragia novae-hollandiae Müll.Arg.

Slender Vine
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Herbarium sheet. CC-BY: ATH.
Herbarium sheet: fruit. CC-BY: ATH.

Mueller, J. von (Aargau). Linnaea: ein Journal für die Botanik in ihrem ganzen Umfange, oder Beiträge zur Pflanzenkunde 34: 180. (1865), Type: "In Nova-Hollandia orientali ad Clarence River et Keppel-Bay (F. Müll.! in hb. DC.)

Common name

Stinging Vine


A slender twining vine, perennial, up to 4 m long. Stems with scattered to dense retrorse hairs when young, becoming hairless with age, stinging and non stinging hairs present.


Leaves simple, alternate. Stipules 2, free, lanceolate, 1-3 mm long. Petiole 2-4 mm long, with stinging hairs. Leaf blades ovate to ± triangular or lanceolate, 3-10 cm long, 1.5-5 cm wide, base cordate, margins serrate, sometimes more dentate at basal end of leaf blade, apex acute. Venation palmate, with and 2 or 3 pairs of veins radiating from base and 5-8 pairs of lateral veins. Upper surface dark green, sometimes hairless but usually with scattered tubercle-based non-stinging hairs and stinging hairs (collapsed in dried material), ± sessile glands, lower surface pale green and with scattered stinging and non-stinging hairs, at least along veins.


Inflorescences terminal or axillary, racemose. Flowers unisexual, plants monoecious, actinomorphic. perianth of 5 or 6 tepals, free or shortly fused at base, lanceolate to ovate, 1.4-2.4 mm long, green. Male flowers 1-3 per bract, pedicels 0.8-4 mm long; female flowers below male flowers in same inflorescence, 1 per bract, pedicels 1-2 mm long. Peduncle and pedicels with stinging and non-stinging hairs present, bracts sparsely hairy or glabrous, tepals glabrous. Male flowers with 3-5 stamens, anthers sessile on a glabrous receptacle. Female flowers with a 3-locular superior ovary, hairy, styles 3, shortly fused at base, branched at apex into 3 recurved stigmas.


Fruit a dry capsule at maturity, depressed-globose, deeply 3-lobed, 7-11 mm diam., green to brown, bristly hairy to ± hairless; perianth persistent at the base of the fruit and style remnants persistent at the apex. Seeds 3, spherical, 3-3.5 mm diameter, brown and cream blotched.


Features not available.

Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NEQ, CEQ and southwards to central New South Wales. Grows in the understorey and canopy of vine thickets and vine forests.

Natural History & Notes

This profile information and associated coding has been adapted from Forster (1994), and Harden et al. (2014).

RFK Code
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