Nicotiana debneyi Domin, Biblioth. Bot. 89: 593; t. 36, figs 6–8 (1929)
T: Rockingham Bay, Qld, ?1868, Dallachy s.n.; holo: K n.v., photo AD; iso: ?MEL.
N. suaveolens var. parviflora Benth., Fl. Austral. 4: 470 (1868), p.p., fide T.H. Goodspeed, Chron. Bot. 16: 483 (1954).
?N. forsteri Roem. & Schult., Syst. Veg. 4: 323 (1819).
T: New Caledonia, J. R. & G. Forster; syn: BM.
N. forsteri Roem. & Schult, may be the earliest name for this species. P.S. Green (Kew Bull. 48: 322 (1993) considered this to be so and used this name in place of N. debneyi Domin in the treatment of Nicotiana for Lord Howe Island in Fl. Austral. 49: 294 (1994). It has also been adopted in the Queensland Census. If the name was to be adopted here, then there would be the need for a new combination for subsp. monoschizocarpa. However the use of this name has been challenged by Knapp and she has doubts that the two are conspecific (pers.comm to David Symon) and so the status quo has been retained here.
Herb to 1.5 m, leaves and lower stems sparsely pubescent with non-glandular hairs.
Radical leaves elliptic, the lamina up to 25 cm long and 14 cm wide; petiole to 14 cm long, broadly winged, somewhat stem-clasping and auriculate at base; cauline leaves smaller, the upper ones narrowly elliptic to linear and becoming sessile, the base auriculate and stem-clasping.
Inflorescence panicle-like, usually many-branched, densely pubescent with glandular hairs. Calyx 4–10 mm long. Corolla-tube 10–25 mm long, narrow at base, 1.5–3 mm wide at top of calyx; limb 6–13 mm diam.; lobes usually broader than long, obtuse, fused above half way. Staminal filaments (4-)6–11 mm long, inserted in lower half of corolla-tube; upper 4 anthers at the same level or nearly so.
Capsule dehiscing by 4 valves, ellipsoid to ovoid, 5–11 mm long. Seeds ovoid to trapezoid; testa wrinkled or with wavy-edged honeycomb markings. n=24.
Distribution and ecology
Occurs mainly in coastal and subcoastal regions of eastern Australia, from Cairns, Qld, to Nowra, N.S.W., with minor, possibly relict, occurrences in central-western Qld. Also occurs naturally in New Caledonia and on Lord Howe Island.
Grows in a range of soils on coastal headlands, in deep gorges, cave openings and disturbed rainforest or softwood scrub, often among regrowth after fire.
Differs from N. monoschizocarpa, earlier treated as a subspecies of N. debneyi, by its wider corolla lobes and its 4-valved capsule.
Qld: Biloela, L.S. Smith 3461 (BRI); Lamington National Park, 27 May 1961, J.H. Willis (MEL). N.S.W.: 32 km NW of Kyogle, R. Henderson 488 (NSW); 45 km WSW of Moura, R.W. Johnson 2814 (CANB).