Octopus Tree

Becky’s Tree Square challenge

The Octopus Tree, Schefflera actinophylla also known as the Umbrella tree belongs to the family Araliaceae. It is native to tropical rainforests and gallery forests of eastern Queensland and the Northern Territory of Australia, New Guinea and Java.

The Octopus Tree Schefflera actinophylla is an evergreen tree growing to 15 m tall. It has compound medium green leaves in groups of seven leaves. It is usually multi-trunked, and the masses of bright red flowers develop at the top of the tree. It often grows as an epiphyte on other rainforest trees or as a lithophyte on rocky outcrops. The Octopus Tree produces up to 1000 individual flowers generating large amounts of nectar which attracts nectar-eating birds and insects. The thousands of fruits produced each containing many seeds are eaten by many birds in particular by Black Collard Barbets  and by monkeys, seed dispersal is predominantly carried out by birds.


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