Among the genera of the great Coffee family, few are as recognizable as this group of vines that would be familiar to some older folk as the source of gambir (Uncaria gambir), a plant substance used in Asian countries such as Indonesia for chewing with areca and betel, for tanning, and for dyeing. But alas, the virtues of this native species remains rather much unexplored.
The stipules of native Uncaria vine immediately distingushes it as a member of the coffee family and then the paired curved hooks tells us instantly that this is a species of Uncaria. This species is the most commonly encountered in FNQ and there is another species, U. cordata which is rather much restricted in distribution to the Bellenden Ker area.
The flowers of the Uncaria vine are clustered in a head, thereby producing a cluster of fruits.