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Morinda

Morinda jasminoides
Rubiaceae
Morinda
Common

A slender, attractive vine with shiny dark-green, opposite leaves up to 7 cm long with smooth edges and a narrow, pointed tip. It can be distinguished by the raised midvein on the upper surface of the leaf and by the presence of small, brown, papery (leaf-like) stipules on the stem between each pair of leaves. On the upper surface of many of the leaves, there may be up to 4 small, raised bumps in the angle between the lateral veins and the midvein (these are gland-like depressions on the underside).

The small, cream flowers occur in clusters and are very fragrant. The fruit is an irregularly round, orange berry about 1.5 cm across. These bright, coloured fruit look very attractive hanging among the leaves in late summer.

The fruit contains several pale-brown seeds which will germinate in 1-3 months if sown fresh. Morinda can be a small shrub or a light climber among taller shrubs and small trees. It is found both in the rainforest and in the moist, sheltered eucalypt forest nearby.

Distribution: Eastern Vic, NSW, Qld and NT.