PNGTreesKey – Rhus taitensis Guill.


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

Rhus taitensis Guill.

Annales des Sciences Naturelles, Series 2 Vol. 7: 361 (1837)

Other Literature: Ding Hou, Flora Malesiana, Series 1, 537-538 (1978)

Family: Anacardiaceae

Timber Group: Occasional timber species

Field Characters: Large canopy tree; Bole cylindrical; straight; buttresses sometimes buttresses present or buttresses absent; spines spines absent; aerial roots aerial roots absent; stilt roots stilt roots absent; Bark grey or pale brown, rough, pustular, coarsely scaly or flaky, or tessellated, lenticels elongated vertically; Subrhytidome (under-bark) red (pale with pale yellow stripes); less than 25 mm thick (5 mm), 10.0; bark blaze consisting of one layer; faintly to non-aromatic or strongly aromatic; pleasant; outer blaze pale red, markings absent, fibrous; inner blaze pale red, markings absent, fibrous; bark exudate (sap) present, white/milky, not readily flowing (spotty), colour not changing on exposure to air, sticky; terminal buds not enclosed by leaves.

Indumentum: Complex hairs absent; stinging hairs absent; mature twig indumentum (hairs) absent.

Leaves: Leaves spaced along branches, spiral (leaves occurring singly at a node and arranged spirally up the branchlet), compound (a leaf made up from two or more leaflets); petiole present, not winged, attached to base of leaf blade, not swollen; leaves pinnate (unbranched with more than three leaflets); petiolule not swollen; rachis present, absent, absent; leaves with a terminal leaflet (the number of leaflets odd - imparipinnate), broadest at or near middle or broadest below middle, 4.0-20.0 cm, 1.5-6.0 (-8.5) cm, leaflets opposite, symmetric; venation pinnate, secondary veins open, prominent, intramarginal veins absent; leaves lower surface green (dull with orange-brown hairs), upper surface green, indumentum (hairs) present, indumentum (hairs) dense to sparse (orange-brown hairs); absent; domatia absent; stipules absent.

Flowers: Inflorescence terminal to axillary (sometimes (as well), flowers on a branched axis, cones absent; flowers unisexual, unisexual with male and female flowers on different plants, stalked, flowers with many planes of symmetry, 1.5-2.0 mm long, diameter small (up to10 mm diam.); perianth present, with distinct sepals and petals whorls, inner perianth white (cream-coloured) or rarely pink; 5, free; stamens 5 (absent in female flowers), present, free of each other, free of the perianth; ovary superior, carpels joined (when more than one), locules 1; styles solitary, 1.

Fruits: Infrutescence arranged on branched axis, fruit 4.0-8.0 mm long, red or black (at maturity), not spiny, fleshy, simple, indehiscent, drupe; seeds 1, not winged, broad (as wide as long), seed 1-10 mm diam.

Distribution: West Sepik, Madang, Morobe, Eastern Highlands, Southern Highlands, Western, Gulf, Central, Northern, Milne Bay, Papuan Islands, New Britain & Bougainville.

Rhus taitensis
Botanical records
in PNGplants database

Map details