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Electronic Flora of South Australia genus Fact Sheet

Family: Compositae
Calocephalus

Citation: R. Br., Trans. Linn. Soc. 12:106 (1817).

Derivation: Greek kalos, beautiful; kephale, a head; referring to the colourful compound heads.

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: None

Description:
Annual or perennial herbs or shrubs, hairy; leaves opposite and/or alternate, sessile, entire, hairy.

Inflorescence a compound head of c. 10-300 capitula; general involucre absent or inconspicuous and consisting of a few leaf-like or partly hyaline bracts; general receptacle more or less entire or branched, glabrous or hairy; capitular bracts 2- or 3-seriate, hyaline or scarious except for the midrib, the upper part of the lamina often constricted and coloured differently from the lower part, free or united by long hairs; florets 1-22 per capitulum, tubular, bisexual, 5-merous; style branches truncate and with short sweeping hairs; stamens 5; anthers tailed and each with a terminal appendage.

Achenes obovoid, more or less glabrous to distinctly papillose; pappus of simple and/or plumose bristles.

Distribution:  About 14 species, endemic to Australia.

Biology: No text

Taxonomic notes: Calocephalus, as defined by Bentham (1867), Fl. Aust. 3:573, is clearly an unnatural group and a number of segregate genera should be recognised (Short, unpubl.).

Key to Species:
1. Florets 1-3 per capitulum
 
2. Shrub to c. 1 m high
C. brownii 1.
2. Herbs
 
3. Leaves alternate; annual
C. sonderi 6.
3. Leaves mostly opposite; perennial
 
4. Capitular bracts yellow
C. citreus 2.
4. Capitular bracts white
C. lacteus 4.
1. Florets 10-22 per capitulum
 
5. Compound heads yellow-brown to orange, c. 0.6-1.1 cm diam.; innermost capitular bracts entirely hyaline or with a small opaque base
C. knappii 3.
5. Compound heads yellow, c. 0.8-3 cm diam.; innermost capitular bracts mainly hyaline but with an opaque midrib extending about two-thirds to three-quarters the length of the bract, the apex of the bract yellow
C. platycephalus 5.

Author: Prepared by P.S. Short


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