Description: Perennial vines or scandent shrubs with prickly or smooth stems, glabrous or hairy.
Leaves opposite, alternate or whorled, lamina entire, with 3–5 longitudinal veins and ± prominent reticulate venation; stipules absent.
Inflorescence pedunculate, axillary spikes or racemes or terminal panicles. Flowers actinomorphic, 3-merous, bisexual [or unisexual]. Tepals 6, in 2 whorls. Stamens 6; filaments free; anthers 2-locular, latrorse, dehiscing by longitudinal slits or pores. Ovary superior, 3-locular; ovules usually 2 per loculus; stigma ± sessile minutely 3-lobed.
Fruit a berry; seeds 1–few.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 1 genus, 6 species, Australia, New Guinea, New Zealand. Australia: 1 genus, 5 species. (4 species endemic).
Text by G. J. Harden
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Mature branchlets and petioles distinctly hairy; base of leaves more or less cordate to rounded||2|
|Mature branchlets and petioles glabrous but sometimes axillary buds and expanding shoots hairy; base of leaves tapering into petiole, not cordate, rarely rounded||3|
|2||Petioles and branchlets rusty-tomentose; leaves elliptic to more or less ovate, mostly more than 3 cm wide||Ripogonum elseyanum|
|Petioles and branchlets sparsely to moderately hirsute with yellow to brownish hairs; leaves more or less lanceolate, usually less than 3 cm wide|
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|3||Leaves oblong, more than 3 times as long as broad, branchlets usually prickly||Ripogonum discolor|
|Leaves ovate to elliptic or lanceolate, mostly less than 3 times as long as broad; branchlets without or with few prickles|
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|4||Leaves usually more than 8 cm long and more than 3 cm wide, opposite, alternate or more often in whorls of 3; flowers pedicellate||Ripogonum album|
|Leaves usually less than 8 cm long and less than 3 cm wide, opposite or alternate; flowers sessile|
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