Hook. f., Hook. Ic. 3:t. 289 (1840), as M. variaefolium.
Synonymy: M. propinquum Cunn. var. genuinum Schindler, Pflanzenr. 23:89 (1905).-M. propinquum sensu J. Black, Fl. S. Aust 646 (1952), in part, auct. non Cunn. (1839).
Common name: None
Perennial aquatic herb, stems 0.3-0.5 m long; leaves dimorphic; submerged leaves in whorls of 4 or 5 (rarely 3), orbicular, pectinate, 11-20 (rarely 35)mm long, with 9-19 widely spaced pinnae, often lacking in dense mature plants; emergent leaves in whorls of 5 (rarely 4 or 6), linear to terete, 8-15 (rarely to 24) mm long, entire or the lowermost 3 or 4 denticulate.
Plants monoecious, flowers unisexual, solitary in the axils; bracteoles ovate, in male flowers 0.7-1.2 mm long, entire, acute; in female flowers smaller; male flowers 4-merous, sessile; sepals orbicular to oblong, 0.5-0.8 mm long, tip rounded to erose; petals yellow to reddish, 2-3.5 mm long, hooded, tardily caducous; stamens 8; anthers linear; styles 0; ovary vestigial; female flowers 4-merous, sessile; sepals, petals and stamens absent; styles sessile, stigmas white, fimbriate; ovary yellowish, cylindrical, 1.1-1.2 mm long, (rarely as short as 0.7mm), 4-locular.
Fruit yellow-brown to pale-reddish, shortly cylindrical; mericarps cylindrical, 1.4-1.5 mm long (rarely as short as 1.1 mm), more or less parallel-sided, smooth or sparsely and minutely papillose, truncate.
Orchard (1986) Brunonia 8:, fig. 9.
Usually strictly aquatic.
S.Aust.: MU, SL, KI, SE.
Flowering time: Sept. — Dec.
SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia
Plants in N.S.W. tested by McBarron (1972) gave a weak to moderately positive reaction for HCN, but the plants are unpalatable to stock.
This species can only be reliably distinguished from M. simulans by the shape, size and colour of its mature fruits. All existing S.Aust. collections tentatively referred to this species lack mature fruits, so its presence in the State is still to be confirmed. Plants from adjacent western Vic. are somewhat intermediate between M. variifolium and M. simulans.
Not yet available