Solanum crebrispinum A.R.Bean, Austrobaileya 6: 742 (2004).
T: Qld, 23 km SE of "Teamass" HS, 10 Jun 1992, E.J.Thompson BUC457 & P.R.Sharpe; holo: BRI; iso: AD. An image of the type specimen can be seen on the Bean interactive key site at http://delta-intkey.com/solanum/images/Sol_crebr.jpg
Erect, rhizomatous perennial shrub, 0.3-0.5 m high. Juvenile stage unknown. Adult branchlets yellow or rusty; prickles 180-420 per decimetre, straight, acicular, 2-11 mm long, 11-15 times longer than wide; stellae very dense, 0.9-1.2 mm diameter, stalks 0-1 mm long; lateral rays 6-8, porrect or ascending; central ray 1-1.7 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped; finger hairs absent; Type 2 hairs absent.
Adult leaves ovate or broadly ovate, entire; lamina 5-9.5 cm long, 2.8-5.5 cm wide, 1.6-1.8 times longer than broad, apex obtuse, acute or acuminate, base obtuse or cordate, oblique part 0-3 mm long, obliqueness index 0-6 percent; petioles 1.1-4.4 cm long, 20-45% length of lamina, prickles present. Upper leaf surface grey-green; prickles 3-35, straight, acicular, 1-5 mm long, prickles present on veins; stellate hairs distributed throughout; protostellae present; ordinary stellae dense, 0.2-0.4 mm apart, 0.8-1.2 mm across, stalks 0.1-0.9 mm long; lateral rays 7 or 8, porrect or ascending; central ray 1-1.7 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped; finger hairs absent; Type 2 hairs absent. Lower leaf surface yellowish; prickles 5-20, straight, acicular, present on midvein only or present on midvein and lateral veins; stellae dense to very dense, 0.05-0.25 mm apart, 0.7-1.2 mm diameter, stalks 0-1 mm long; lateral rays 6-8, porrect or ascending; central ray 1-1.7 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped; finger hairs absent; Type 2 hairs absent.
Inflorescence supra-axillary, pseudo-racemose, common peduncle 0-25 mm long, rachis prickles present; 3-5-flowered, flowers 5-merous; pedicels 4-6 mm long at anthesis, same thickness throughout, 0.9-1.2 mm thick at midpoint, prickles present. Calyx tube 1.5-2 mm long, lobes attenuate, 3-5.5 mm long; prickles present at anthesis, 50-70 per flower, 2-6 mm long; stellae very dense, yellow or white, 0.7-0.9 mm across, stalks 0-0.7 mm long, lateral rays 7 or 8, central ray 1-1.7 times as long as laterals, not gland-tipped; finger hairs absent; Type 2 hairs absent. Corolla purple, 8-10 mm long, shallowly lobed, inner surface glabrous; anthers c. 3.8 mm long; ovary with Type 2 hairs only; functional style c. 5.8 mm long, erect, with Type 2 hairs only.
Fruiting calyx with lobes more than half length of mature fruit, prickles 3-6 mm long. Mature fruits 1 or 2 per inflorescence, globular, 14-16 mm diameter, yellowish-green or green; mesocarp moist but not juicy; pedicels 8-9 mm long in fruit, 1.5-1.8 mm thick at mid-point.
Reproduced, with permission, from Bean (2004).
Another detailed description of this species can be found on the Bean interactive key site at http://delta-intkey.com/solanum/www/crebrisp.htm
Distribution and ecology
Only recorded from the Lake Buchanan area S of Charters Towers in Qld. It occurs on sandstone ridges or "jump-ups".
Closest to S. ellipticum from which it differs by
- erect, rather than prostrate habit of S. ellipticum
- dense (50-70) prickles on the calyx, less dense (5-50) in S. ellipticum
- dimensions of the stellate hairs on the stems and branches; in S. crebrispinum the stalks are up to 1 mm long while they are only up to 0.3 mm long in S. ellipticum. The lateral and central rays of the stellate hairs are also consistently longer in S. crebrispinum than they are in S. ellipticum (see Bean 2004).
Both species were considered by Bean (2004) to be members of the S. ellipticum group of subgen. Leptostemonum.
Derivation of epithet
From the Latin crebra, abundant, and spina, spines or prickles, a reference to the abundant prickles on the branchlets and calyx.
Plant status, if any
Not considered at risk (Bean 2004).
From the web
An image of the type specimen can be seen on the Bean interactive key site at http://delta-intkey.com/solanum/images/Sol_crebr.jpg
Further information and links for this species can be found on the Solanaceae Source site