A global citizen science platform
to discover, share and identify wildlife
A liana is any of various long-stemmed, woody vines that are rooted in the soil at ground level and use trees, as well as other means of vertical support, to climb up to the canopy to get access to well-lit areas of the forest. The term "liana" is not a taxonomic grouping, but rather a description of the way the plant grows – much like "tree" or "shrub". (Wiki) Lianas are long-lived and compete with trees and other flora for light and nutrients, and because they are rooted in the soil, they are not epiphytes. PS: There is so little information online about Australian liana species, and as there are literally dozens of species in Australia, an exact ID* is most unlikely at this stage. When it comes to identifying many large lianas, all we see is the bark. Any new growth such as leaves, flowers and fruit, is all happening high up in the canopy, and that is usually beyond view until the supporting trees and vine come crashing down. However, the last photo in this series (#7) shows a much younger vine where its foliage is still visible. Big vines start off as little vines, and that's the best time to ID them! This specimen was on a different part of the track, and most likely a different species.
Spotted on the Mt. Mathieson Trail in a dense section of subtropical rainforest at Mt. Mathieson, Spicers Gap. This area is part of Main Range National Park, and the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area. Lots of leaf litter and quite damp due to morning fog. Soft, filtered light.
* Queensland Government - Department of Environment and Science (DES) - (1) https://wetlandinfo.des.qld.gov.au/wetla... Specific to the native plants found in Main Range National Park. (2) https://www.des.qld.gov.au/assets/docume... - Notophyll vine forest and microphyll fern forests to thickets on high peaks and plateaus (page 58 of PDF document). It applies to the Scenic Rim national parks in southeast Queensland. Frequent vines include: Cephalaralia cephalobotrys, Hibbertia scandens, Marsdenia rostrata, Pandorea baileyana, Parsonsia induplicata, Ripogonum discolor and Smilax australis. Other reference sites: Notophyll rainforests and thickets of the wet tropics bioregion, and the different classifications for vine forests - https://www.wettropics.gov.au/site/user-... and defining tropical rainforest - http://rainforest-australia.com/Plant_ty...