PNGTreesKey – Elaeocarpus sphaericus Schum.


Barry Conn (NSW) & Kipiro Damas (LAE).
Guide to trees of Papua New Guinea
Copyright held by the authors, National Herbarium of New South Wales, and Papua New Guinea National Herbarium

Elaeocarpus sphaericus Schum.

in Engler & Prantl, Die Naturlichen Pflanzenfamilien 3, Vol. 6: 5 (1890)

Other Literature: M.J.E. Coode, Handbooks of the Flora of Papua New Guinea 87-88 (1981)

Family: Elaeocarpaceae

Timber Group: Commercial hardwood

Field Characters: Large canopy tree (up to 40 m high); Bole cylindrical (up to c. 60 cm diam.); straight (bole up to c. 15 m long); buttresses buttresses present (usually buttresses usually thin, widely spreading, 5-6 m high); spines spines absent; aerial roots aerial roots absent; stilt roots stilt roots absent; Bark brown, slightly rough or smooth, slightly fissured or pustular; Subrhytidome (under-bark) green; less than 25 mm thick (5 mm), 6.0-8.0; bark blaze consisting of one layer; strongly aromatic; pleasant; outer blaze white (cream-coloured) or pale brown, markings absent, fibrous; inner blaze white (cream-coloured) or pale brown, markings absent, fibrous; bark exudate (sap) present, colourless, not readily flowing (spotty), colour not changing on exposure to air, not sticky; terminal buds not enclosed by leaves.

Indumentum: Complex hairs absent; stinging hairs absent; mature twig indumentum (hairs) sometimes present or absent, hairs dense to sparse.

Leaves: Leaves clustered at end of branches to spaced along branches, spiral (leaves occurring singly at a node and arranged spirally up the branchlet), simple (a leaf composed of a single blade); petiole present, slightly winged, attached to base of leaf blade, not swollen; leaves broadest above middle or broadest at or near middle, 12.0-17.0 cm, 4.0-6.0 cm; symmetric, crenate, not dissected or lobed, acute, venation pinnate, secondary veins open, not prominent, but visible, intramarginal veins absent; leaves lower surface pale green or green, upper surface green (glossy), indumentum (hairs) absent or sometimes present, indumentum (hairs) sparse; absent; domatia absent; stipules absent.

Flowers: Inflorescence on the trunk or branches, flowers on an unbranched axis, cones absent; flowers bisexual, stalked, flowers with many planes of symmetry, 12.0-15.0 mm long, diameter small (up to10 mm diam.); perianth present, with distinct sepals and petals whorls; (4-) 5, free; stamens 35 (c.), present, free of each other, free of the perianth; ovary superior, carpels joined (when more than one), locules 5 (-7); styles solitary, 1.

Fruits: Infrutescence arranged on branched axis, fruit 20.0 mm long, bright blue or purplish purple, not spiny, fleshy, simple, indehiscent, drupe; seeds (1-) 2-5 (-7), much more than 10 mm long (including stone), not winged, broad (as wide as long), seed 1-10 mm diam.

Distribution: West Sepik, East Sepik, Morobe, Western Highlands, Eastern Highlands, Southern Highlands, Western, Gulf, Central, Northern, Milne Bay, New Britain & Manus.

Elaeocarpus sphaericus
Botanical records
in PNGplants database

Map details