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Myrmecodia platytyrea

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Myrmecodia platytyrea subspecies antoinii.
On the other subspecies, Myrmecodia platytyrea subspecies platytyrea, the shield shaped structures along the stem are noticeably longer than wide.

Photo by Frank Omilian.

Drawing by af Eleanor Catherine.

Author:  Odoardo Beccari, 1884
Origin:  Papua New Guinea, Queensland; Northern Australia
Soil:  No; Epiphytic
Water:  Maximum
Sun:  Minimum
Thickness:  20 Centimetres
Height:  30 Centimetres
Flower:  White
Propagate:  Seeds
Names:  Ant Plant
Synonyms:  Myrmecodia antoinii*, Beccari, 1884.
Myrmecodia platytyrea subsp. antoinii, Huxley & Jebb.

This member of the Rubiaceae family was described by Odoardo Beccari in 1884. It is found in the rainforests of Papua New Guinea and Cape York, Australia. It is an epiphyte, needs lots of water but not much sun. The caudex will grow to 20 centimetres in diameter, the stems can reach for 30 centimetres. The flowers are white (15 or 16 mm long), and the plant can only be reproduced by seeds.

The genera name means 'ant head'. The species name from Grek platys; 'flat', and probably Greek tyros; 'cheese', perhaps for the tuber. It was introduced by Odoardo Beccari in Malesia Raccolta ... 2: 115. 1884 - which I fail to understand (Italian?).

*)Myrmecodia antoinii, Beccari 1884, has been moved to a subspecies of Myrmecodia platytyrea by Huxley & Jebb in 1993.

SubFamily: Rubioideae
Tribe: Psychotrieae
SubTribe: Hydnophytinae

A key to the genera of the HYDNOPHYTTNAE is found on the Myrmecodia alata page.

I found this Myrmecodia platytyrea subs. antoinii outside Port Morseby, Papau New Guinea.

Found this plant in Kiel BG.

Found this in another German BG.

Photo by Frank Omilian.