Description: Woody climbers, usually dioecious; branches leafy.
Leaves simple, linear, narrow-lanceolate, ovate, or obovate, venation parallel, margins and midrib prickly, base sheathing, with auricles that are often worn or lost with age.
Inflorescences terminal, ternate or sometimes solitary, with leaf-like bracts below, the uppermost fleshy spathes, variously coloured. Male spikes pedunculate, with numerous stamens. Female spikes composed of syncarps, with 2 or 3 linear staminodes; ovary 1-locular; stigmas 2 or 3.
Syncarps ovoid, usually red, yellow or white; individual fruit a berry, seeds many, small.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 100 species, Ceylon to New Zealand & Polynesia. Australia: 6 species (native), Qld & N.S.W.
Text by A. K. Brooks
|One species in NSW: Freycinetia excelsa|