Macaranga tanarius, Fam. Euphorbiaceae
Shrub or small tree to about 6m with a single stem or multiple stems and grey brown bark, often with numerous lenticels.
|Form or habit:||Shrub, Small tree|
Simple, alternate, broadly ovate to rounded, peltate, 8-25cm long, margins usually entire. Green above and paler below with short hairs and numerous small colourless glands, petioles up to 20cm long.
|Flower description:||Panicles of drooping, greenish yellow flowers with fringed floral bracts, dioecious. Spring to summer.|
|Fruit description:||Yellow, three lobed capsules with soft 'prickles' scattered over the surface, about 1cm in diameter.|
|Distribution||Queensland, New South Wales, Northern Territory, New Guinea, Melanesia, Malesia, Asia.|
|Food source for:||Seed eaten by the brown cuckoo dove, emerald dove and sulphur crested cockatoo. Buds, flowers and foliage eaten by the rainbow lorikeet. Larval food plant of the blue moonbeam butterfly.|
|Toxicity:||No toxicity known|
|Origin:||Australia, New Guinea, Melanesia, Malesia, Asia.|
|Notes:||It is useful as a pioneer species and for screening plantings as it is quick growing and attractive. Grow from fresh seed or cuttings. The trunks were used by some Aboriginal communities to make light, strong shafts for fishing spears ad Groote Island Aborigines used fibres from the bark to make twine. In southeast Asia a glue is mage from the gum. Timber is soft and white.|
|Information sources:||Melzer R. & Plumb J. (2007) Plants of Capricornia.|