Solanum acanthodapis A.R.Bean, Austrobaileya 6: 250 (2002).
T: NSW, Big Scrub Flora Reserve. c. 20 km N of Lismore, 2 Dec 2000, A.R.Bean 17075; holo: BRI; iso: AD, K, L, MEL, NSW.
S. corifolium auct.non F.Muell.: Symon, J. Adelaide Bot. Gard. 4: 135, p.p. (only with respect to Clark et al. 1260).
Prostrate shrub with long runners, rooting at the nodes, with sporadic erect shoots to 30 cm high. Fertile branchlets terete or ridged, pale brown, tomentose, with moderate to dense (branchlet visible) stellate hairs, densely armed with prickles (25-65 per dm of branchlet), each 3-7 mm long, glabrous; stellate hairs sessile, 0.2-0.35 mm diameter, lateral rays porrect, 7 or 8, central ray 0.5-1.5 times as long as laterals.
Adult leaves ovate to elliptical in outline, usually with 2-4 pairs of acute lobes, rarely entire; lobing index 1-1.4; lamina 5.5- 9.5 cm long, 2.8-4.5 cm wide, 1.6-2.3 times longer than broad, apex acute, basally dimidiate, oblique part 0-2 mm long, obliqueness index 0-3%. Petioles 10-17 mm long, 14-29% length of lamina, prickles present. Upper leaf surface dark green, prickles numerous (>30) on midrib and secondary veins; stellate hairs confined to major veins even on developing leaves, 0.2-0.3 mm diameter, sessile, sparse, lateral rays porrect, 6-8, central ray 0.5-1.2 times as long as laterals. Lower leaf surface pale green to pale yellow, prickles more than 10 on midrib and secondary veins; stellate hairs sparse to very dense, 0.25-0.35 mm across, sessile, lateral rays porrect, 7 or 8, central rays uniform in length, 0.2-0.8 times as long as laterals.
Inflorescences cymose, pseudo-umbellate or with short axis, 2-8 flowered, some flowers functionally male, prickles present on pedicels. Pedicels 9-20 mm long at anthesis. Flowers 5-merous. Calyx moderately stellate-hairy, hairs 0.2-0.3 mm diameter, transparent to purplish, lateral rays 7 or 8, central ray 0.5-1 times as long as laterals. Prickles absent from calyx or a few short (0.5-1 mm long) prickles present. Hypanthium campanulate, 2-3 mm long at anthesis; lobes attenuate, 1.5-2.5 mm long at anthesis. Corolla mauve to purple, 15- 20 mm diameter; lobes 5-7 mm long. Anthers 4.0-5.0 mm long. Filaments 0.6-1 mm long, glabrous. Ovary with stipitate glandular hairs on distal half. Functional style 6-7.5 mm long, erect, with stipitate glandular hairs at base; stigma entire. Mature fruits 1 per inflorescence, globular to ellipsoidal, 15-18 mm diameter, yellow-green, glabrous, septum incomplete with placenta confined to central area of fruit; pericarp c. 0.8 mm thick when fresh. Pedicels 21-24 mm long. Seeds 3.5-4.0 mm long, pale yellow.
This description is the original description of the species by Bean reproduced with permission from Austrobaileya 6: 250 (2002). A detailed description by Bean can also be found at http://delta-intkey.com/solanum/www/acanthod.htm
Distribution and ecology
Found only in NE NSW in the Lismore area where it occurs in rainforest.
Bean (2004) documents S. acanthodapis as being variable in morphology and records that intermediate forms do exist between it and S. serpens .
Both species are unusual in being prostrate. They differ in
- entire leaves of S. serpens, these usually lobed in S. acanthodapis
- prickles rare or absent on upper leaf surface, absent on lower surface in S. serpens compared with numerous prickles present on both surfaces for S. acanthodapis
- stellate hairs on the ovary and style in S. serpens, these absent in S. acanthodapis
Considered by Bean (2004) to be a member of the S. macoorai group of subgen. Leptostemonum.
From the Greek acanthos (prickly) and dapis (a carpet or rug), a reference to the plants resemblance to a prickly green carpet at maturity.
Derivation of epithet
NSW: Victoria Park Nature Reserve, c. 8 km S of Alstonville, Apr 2001, A.R.Bean 17564 (AD, BRI, MEL, NSW); Victoria Park, 4 miles [6km] SSW of Alstonville, Aug 1969, Clark 1260 et al. (BRI, NSW); Big Scrub Flora Reserve, Apr 2001, A.R.Bean 17561 (BRI, NSW); Rotary Park, Lismore, Dec 2000, A.R.Bean 17081 (BRI); Booyong Flora Reserve, ENE of Lismore, Dec 2000, A.R.Bean 17083 (BRI).
All cited by Bean in the original description of the species in Austrobaileya 6: 252 (2002).
A photograph of this species by Hugh & Nan Nicholson can be seen on the Terania Rainforest Publishing Photo Library site.
Further information, photographs and links for this species can be found on the Solanaceae Source site.