Electronic Flora of South Australia
Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia species Fact Sheet

Family: Amaranthaceae
Ptilotus polystachyus

Citation: F. Muell., Fragm. Phyt. Aust. 6:230 (1868), emend. Benl, Mitt. Bot. München 3:517 (1960) var. polystachyus.

Synonymy: Trichinium polystachyum Gaudich., Voy. aut. Monde (Bot.) 445 (1826); T. alopecuroideum Lindley in T.L. Mitchell, Three Exped. Int. eastern Austral. 2:12 (1838); P. alopecuroideus (Lindley)F. Muell., Fragm. Phyt. Aust. 6:227 (1868). , Ptilotus polystachyus, Trichinium candicans, Trichinium pallidum, Trichinium preissii

Common name: None

Herbaceous annuals or perennials to c. 1.5 m high, with stems leafy, stiffly erect or straggling from a central tap root, often tufted to roundish clumps of up to 2 m across and paniculately branched, slightly downy with short crisp hairs when young, becoming glabrous except on upper parts and leaf axils; leaves usually linear or lance-shaped, with somewhat undulate margins, basal ones to 21 x 3.6 cm, long-petiolate.

Spikes pedunculate, very soon cylindrical, with flowers (150 and more) up to 20 X 2 mm, fragrant when fresh; bract and bracteoles 4-8 X 3.5-4 mm; perianth-segments linear-spathulate, free to base, with short rigid hairs not obscuring the concave and slightly dilated apices often emarginate in outer segments, all subglabrous inside; stamens initially deep-red, 1 or 2 smaller ones sterile, staminal cup free, oblique, dentate to cleft, short-ciliate; ovary subsessile, usually glabrous, style eccentric, mostly with an S-shaped bending and unilateral hairs toward the base.

Distribution:  S.Aust.: NW, LE, NU, GT, FR, EA, EP, MU, SL.   All mainland States.

Conservation status: native

Flowering time: over the whole year but particularly May — Nov.

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

Biology: In S.Aust. only var. polystachyus is present which exists in two forms often sympatric.

Author: Not yet available

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