List of species combining spinescent leaves and bright-hued fleshy fruits in Australia

(Also see

There are probably more species of plants combining leaf-spinescence and fleshy fruits in Australia than on any other landmass (see

However, it is as yet difficult to list the Australian species definitively.

This is because:

  • the flora is so diverse that several species are incompletely documented (e.g. in Persoonia),
  • both leaf-spinescence and the fleshiness and bright colouration of fruit-pulp are marginally expressed in many clades,
  • leaf-spinescence may be subject to heteroblasty and/or induced by herbivory, and
  • in Ericaceae, there is a bewildering complex of epacridoid genera that overlap in many features.

Note that in the genus of hollies, Ilex arnhemensis (Aquifoliaceae) is the only species indigenous to Australia. Its leaves are not spinescent.

The following provisional list is arranged alphabetically. Parentheses indicate species that qualify only ambivalently, because the leaves are not clearly spinescent and/or because the fruits are relatively small and dull-hued.


Alyxia oblongata and and

Alyxia ilicifolia

(Alyxia orophila has weakly spinescent leaves and and and

Alyxia ruscifolia and and

Alyxia sharpei and and


(Acrotriche aggregata and

Acrotriche patula and

(Androstoma verticillatum leaves probably not spinescent but described by Kirkpatrick (1997) as having a 'strong, sharp point'

(Astroloma humifusum

(Astroloma conostephioides

Leptecophylla abietina and

Leptecophylla divaricata and and

Leptecophylla juniperina and and and

Leptecophylla oxycedrus and and and and

Leptecophylla parvifolia and and and and and and

Leptecophylla pendulosa and

Leptecophylla pogonocalyx and and and and

Leucopogon fraseri

Leucopogon juniperinus and and

(Leucopogon parviflorus fruits too small and dull-hued and

Leucopogon trichostylus and and and

(Lissanthe sapida leaves probably do not qualify as spinescent and and and and

Lissanthe strigosa and

(Monotoca billawinica spinescence of leaves needs confirmation

Monotoca elliptica and

Monotoca glauca leaves spinescent but fruit may remain greenish when ripe

Monotoca oreophila leaves possibly spinescent and

Monotoca scoparia and

Styphelia sieberi

(Styphelia triflora and

(Styphelia tubiflora and and and and


Podocarpus spinulosus


Persoonia juniperina

Posted on February 18, 2022 12:10 AM by milewski milewski


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