Myristica insipida

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Myristica insipida


Shrub or tree (4-)6-25 m. Leaves membranous or chartaceous, elliptic-oblong or oblong-lanceolate, 7-20(-24) by 2-6(-8) cm, base rounded or cuneate, apex acute(-acuminate), the very tip often ± blunt; Inflorescences between the leaves, axillary or up to 2 mm supra-axillary, as in Knema: Fruits 1 or 2 per infructescence, subsessile, ovoid-ellipsoid or ellipsoid-oblong, 2.5-3.8 by 1.5-2 cm, apex acute or with short beak 1-2.5 mm, base rounded or cuneate or ± narrowed, hairs dense, pale or dark brown, woolly, 0.3-1 mm, glabrescent, but hairs remaining in the depressions left after drying and towards the base of the fruit;


Asia-Tropical, E to N Queensland present, N Australia present, N Western Australia present, S New Guinea present, SE Moluccas present, Tanimbar Is present
N Australia (N Western Australia,E to N Queensland); Malesia: SE Moluccas (Tanimbar Is.), S New Guinea.


3 Myristica insipida is characterized by subpersistent ± scattered hairs and usually distinct papillation on the lower leaf surface, widely spaced lateral nerves, woolly-haired flowers, usually glabrous androphore (partly pubescent in part of the material from New Guinea), and fruits with woolly hairs to 1 mm. The species is related to M. globosa subsp. muelleri from the Pacific (Solomon Islands); the basionym M. muelleri was included by Sinclair (I.e.) in M. insipida. 1 In M. insipida three groups can be recognized: 1) Material from the Tanimbar Islands, characterized by well-developed papillae on the lower leaf surface (lens!), glabrous androphore, and rather elongate fruits with dark rust-coloured comparatively short hairs, up to 0.5 mm long only. 2) Material from New Guinea with scattered pale brown hairs on the lower half of the androphore; some collections with the venation on the lower leaf surface either raised and distinct or ± flat and indistinct (e.g. Brass 6430), and the bracteoles persistent or late caducous (e.g. Brass 6505). 3) Material from northern Australia, containing the type specimens of M. insipida and most of its synonyms, characterized by a distinct venation of the lower leaf surface, persistent bracteole, glabrous androphore, and fruits with pale or bright brown hairs to 1 mm long. 2 Branderhorst 294 (L) (two separate branches, one with male flowers, one with fruits) from S Papua Barat, agrees with M. insipida vegetatively and also in the shape of the male flowers with thickish woolly indumentum, but differs markedly in its androphore with dense conspicuous brown hairs 0.2-0.4 mm. UPNG 645A (Frodin c.s.) differs in male inflorescences with the peduncles up to 4 mm long.


Blake 1954 – In: Austral. J. Bot.: 124
Warb. 1897: Mon. Myrist: 499: t. 18 f. 1-6
Foreman 1978 – In: Handb. Fl. Papua New Guinea: 200
Benth. 1870 – In: Fl. Austral.: 281
J. Sinclair 1968: p. 369. – In: Gard. Bull. Sing.: f. 61
W.J. de Wilde 1997: p. 187. – In: Blumea: 168
1827: 256
W.J. de Wilde 1995: p. 187. – In: Blumea: 292
1827: 256
W.J. de Wilde 1991: p. 187. – In: Blumea: f. 2
W.J. de Wilde 1990: p. 245. – In: Blumea: f. 1: 6