R. Br. in Sturt, Exped. Centr. Aust., Bot. App. 83 (1849).
Synonymy: S. patens F. Muell., Fragm. Phyt. Aust. 3:33 (1862).
, Merkusia depauperata
Common name: Skeleton fanflower.
Undershrub to 1 m high; stems erect, divaricate-branched, robust, green, prominently striate, glabrous to subglabrous; basal leaves few, ovate-spathulate, to 4.5 cm long, finely pubescent, soon withering; cauline leaves sessile, remote, entire, slightly pubescent, some narrow-linear, 3-25 mm long, most reduced to ovate or triangular scales 1-3 mm long.
Flowers in a loose thyrse; bracts resembling the upper scale leaves; peduncles 1-5 cm long, similar to the branchlets; bracteoles triangular, 2-4 mm long, glandular-pubescent, opposite or subopposite near the apex of the peduncle; sepals lanceolate, 2.5-3.5 mm long, connate for half their length to form a campanulate calyx, glandular-pubescent; corolla 20-28 mm long, lilac or blue to cream-white, often with dark lines, pubescent outside, bearded in the throat; lobes elliptic, acuminate, 6-10 mm long, with narrow ciliate wings; tube 14-16 mm long; style 12-17 mm long, glabrous or sparsely hairy above; indusium depressed-obovate, c. 2 mm long, c. 3 mm wide, densely covered in whitish bristles c. 2 mm long with shorter bristles around the orifice; ovary ellipsoid, 3-4 mm long, 2-celled, minutely pubescent.
Fruit ellipsoid to subglobose, 5-8 mm long, tuberculate, ribbed, glabrescent, with a persistent calyx; mesocarp thin, dry.
||Habit, leaf, flower
Image source: fig. 636b in Jessop J.P. & Toelken H.R. (Ed.) 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).|
Cunningham et al. (1982) Plants of western New South Wales, p. 636.
On sand dunes.
S.Aust.: NW, LE, NU, GT, EP, MU. W.Aust.; N.T.; Qld; N.S.W.
Flowering time: most of the year.
SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia
Not yet available