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

Family: Boraginaceae

Citation: Brand, Pflanzenr. 97 (252):135 (1931).

Derivation: Referring to the mericarps which were thought to be intermediate between those of Omphalodes and Lappula.

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: None

Annuals usually with several branches from the base, covered with hairs of more or less equal length; leaves opposite, with a few clustered into a basal rosette, subpetiolate but with a short sheath, becoming alternate widely spaced and sessile on the stems.

Inflorescence with 1 or 2 erect scorpioid cymes with pedicellate flowers loosely spaced, with leaf-like bracts; sepals little connate basally, scarcely elongating after flowering; corolla regular, cylindrical, glabrous except for papillose protrusions in the throat; stamens inserted just below the throat of the corolla tube, with anthers subsessile, with a mucro-like appendage; ovary 4-lobed, pyramidal with a style inserted near the middle, short and with a terminal capitate stigma.

Fruit with 4 mericarps splitting off the slender central gynobase; mericarps ovoid, with the outer surface flattened, finely hairy, surrounded by a short rim with few stout spines terminating in a barbed apex; scar of attachment narrowly ovate in the lower third and continued in a narrow strip towards the apex on the inside.

Distribution:  A monotypic genus endemic to central Australia.

Biology: No text

Taxonomic notes: The status of the genus Omphalolappula is largely determined by the delimitation of the 2 mainly north temperate genera Hackelia Opiz and Lappula Moench as the fruits in all 3 genera are very similar in spite of the inference by Brand (1931) in the name of the above genus. Airy Shaw (1972), 'A dictionary of the flowering plants and ferns' as well as recent American literature maintained the latter 2 genera, while Chater (1972), Fl. Europaea 3:117, includes Hackelia in the synonomy of Lappula. I. M. Johnston (pers. comm. in Ising (1965), Trans. R. Soc. S. Aust. 89:283) considered Omphalolappula concava to be a species of Lappula, which (cf. I. M. Johnston (1927), Contr. Gray Herb. 78:5, 25) is probably because the whole inside keel of the mericarps is fused to the gynobase (the central axis to which the mericarps are attached and which consists of tissues of the gynoecium as well as of the receptacle). Lappula species are also like O. concava usually annuals whereas Hackelia species are perennials or biennials. Omphalolappula is here treated as a separate genus as it has always recurved fruiting pedicels atypical of Lappula and characteristic of Hackella (see also Embadium).

Author: Not yet available

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