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Electronic Flora of South Australia species Fact Sheet

Family: Euphorbiaceae
Phyllanthus fuernrohrii

Citation: F. Muell., J. Trans. Vict. Inst. 1:15 (1855).

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Sand spurge.

Description:
Hoary perennial subshrub, 10-40 cm tall and to 60 cm diam., with a covering of minute spreading white hairs; stems arising usually from the base but sometimes with a central axis, thin branches grey, thicker branches reddish, almost woody at the base; leaves flat, not distichous, very shortly petiolate, obovate, 3-12 x 2-6 mm, obtuse, mucronulate, with an obscure central rib underneath evenly pubescent with short hairs, stipules ovate-lanceolate, 1-2 x 0.5-0.7 mm, membranous.

Perianth-segments 6; monoecious; male flowers 1-3, in upper leaf axils, on filiform peduncles 2-3 mm long; perianth-segments ovate-acute, c. 1.5 mm long, with broad scarious margins; filaments free terminally, connate basally; anthers dehiscing longitudinally; glands large; female flowers single or with 1 or 2 male flowers, peduncles slender, 4-9 mm long; perianth-segments ovate-acute, c. 2 mm long and extending to 3-4 mm under the fruit, narrow-scarious; the styles divided to the middle into 2 linear spreading lobes; disc entire or broadly lobed.

capsule depressed-globular, 4-6 mm diam., 3-lobed, grey-brown, pubescent; seed 1.5-2.5 mm long, brown-red or grey spotted brown, smooth, with a ventral groove.

image of FSA2_Phyllanthus_fue.jpg Phyllanthus fuernrohrii twig, leaf, fruit and 2 cocci.
Image source: fig 406c in Jessop J.P. & Toelken H.R. (Ed.) 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).

Published illustration: Cunningham et al. (1982) Plants of western New South Wales, p. 460; Stanley & Ross (1983) Flora of south-eastern Queensland 1:fig. 67d.

Distribution:  S.Aust.: LE, NU, GT, FR, EP, MU.   W.Aust.; Qld; N.S.W.; ?Vic.

Conservation status: native

Flowering time: most of the year.


SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia

Biology: The plant has been suspected of poisoning sheep and cattle. (White (1937) Annual report of the Department of Agriculture and Stock Queensland 1936/37:113).

Taxonomic notes: Moderately common in LE, rare in other regions. Usually on sandy soils. Sometimes behaves as an annual, but with good rains becomes woody and perennial. Plants show similarities with Sauropus trachyspermus which is glaucous and has incurved deeply wrinkled seeds.

Author: Not yet available


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