Electronic Flora of South Australia
Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia genus Fact Sheet

Family: Asparagaceae

Citation: Labill., Nov. Holl. Pl. Sp. 1:92 (1805).

Derivation: Greek loma, margin; andros, a male; alluding to the circular margin of the anthers in some species.

Synonymy: Xerotes R. Br., Prod. Fl. Nov. Holl. 259 (1810). (A. Lee (1966) Contr. N.S.W. natn. Herb. Fl. ser. 34:16).

Common name: Irongrasses.

Perennials with narrow hard linear leaves, almost all basal and usually much longer than the inflorescence, the sheathing bases often split into silky filaments.

Flowers small, dioecious; male perianth of 6 free or partly united segments; stamens 6; female perianth of 6 segments which are faintly 1-nerved; ovary 3-celled, with 1 ovule in each cell; style 3-cleft nearly to the base, the short stigmatic branches recurved.

Fruit a hard subglobular capsule, opening loculicidally in 3 valves.

Distribution:  About 50 species in Australia, with 1 in New Caledonia and 2 in New Guinea.

Biology: No text

Key to Species:
1. Inflorescence (male and female) a rigid panicle with whorled branches and clustered flowers
2. Male flowers pedicellate; female flowers sessile; capsule transversely wrinkled
L. multiflora 10.
2. Male and female flowers sessile (however, see note to L. multiflora); capsule smooth
3. Bracts short, obtuse
L. dura 2.
3. Bracts with long acute points
L. longifolia 8.
1. Inflorescence (male and female) a raceme, spike or of one or more heads; if a panicle, the branches not whorled and flowers usually 1 per bract
4. Inflorescence (male and female) a large head or cylindrical spike; flowers embedded in the wool-like fibres of the bracteoles
L. leucocephala 7.
4. Inflorescence a panicle, raceme or spike; bracteoles not embedding the flowers in wool-like fibres
5. Flowers (male and female) in clusters or globular heads
6. Leaves narrow and long; bracts entire
L. glauca 5.
6. Leaves of 2 types: the outer reduced to sheathing bases; bracts fringed
L. juncea 6.
5. Flowers scattered (1 per bract)
7. Flowers sessile or subsessile to 1 mm long
8. Perianth-segments all suborbicular, obtuse; leaves c. 1-3 mm broad
L. sororia 11.
8. Female perianth-segments acute; outer male segments lanceolate, acuminate; inner male segments ovate, abruptly narrowed to obtuse tips; leaves filiform, usually 0.5-1 mm diam
L. fibrata 4.
7. Flowers on pedicels at least 1 mm long
9. Male flowers 3-6 mm long; female flowers c. 7 mm long
L. effusa 3.
9. Male flowers 1.5-2.5 mm long; female flowers 3-5 mm long
10. Branches of male inflorescences 3-7 cm long; leaves filiform, terete, plano-convex or channelled, with brown or black shiny basal sheaths
L. micrantha 9.
10. Branches of male inflorescences 1-2 cm long; leaves often flat, with pale not shiny sheaths
L. densiflora 1.

Author: Not yet available

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