Omphalea papuana and Omphalea queenslandiae F.M.Bailey are similar species that have at times been confused. Their ranges overlap in northeastern Australia. The report on edibility from [
] for Omphalea queenslandiae refers to plants growing wild in New Guinea and almost certainly refers to Omphalea papuana. Omphalea queenslandiae is endemic to northeastern Australia and its range does not extend to New Guinea. The report from [
] cites Omphalea gageana (Pax & K.Hoffm.) Airy Shaw as a synonym of Omphalea queenslandiae, but Omphalea gageana is seen as a synonym of Omphalea papuana and is treated as such here.
Aleurites erraticus O.Deg., I.Deg. & K.Hummel
Neomphalea gageana Pax & K.Hoffm.
Neomphalea papuana (Pax & K.Hoffm.) Pax & K.Hoffm.
Omphalea gageana Airy Shaw
Omphalea papuana Gage
Omphalea papuana is an evergreen climbing plant with woody stems that can be around 8cm wide. It climbs into the surrounding vegetation, supporting itself by means of tendrils[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
Although the family Euphorbiaceae contains a very high percentage of poisonous plants, the seeds of this and several other species in the genus Omphalea are an exception to the rule, with several of them being considered wholesome and being eaten by humans. Some caution should be employed, however, since there are often warnings about how they should be eaten. Some reports, for example, say that the embryo of this species needs to be removed in order to remove a deleterious principal[
Australasia - Australia (Queensland), New Guinea, Solomon Islands
Lowland gallery forest and rainforest; at elevations up to 50 metres[
The plant can not withstand frost[
Plants require a sunny position in well drained soil[
Seed - cooked[
]. - see notes above on taxonomy.
A cluster of fruit is borne on a branch up to 5cm long near the base. The fruit is 6 - 10cm across and fleshy with
3 - 4 lobes. The fruit surface is smooth and yellow when ripe. The seed coat is hard, brown and ridged. The kernel is white[
]. A kernel of a nut weighs about 3 grams[
Cuttings of firm new growth[
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