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

Family: Fabaceae
Swainsona fissimontana

Citation: J. Black, Trans. R.Soc. S. Aust. 51:381 (1927).

Synonymy: Swainsona fissimontana, Swainsona murrayana

Common name: Broken Hill pea.

Compact perennial with ascending stems 10-40 cm long, sometimes numerous, compact; indumentum of moderately dense appressed medifixed hairs; leaves 2.5-8, commonly 3-6 cm long, with 7-13 commonly 9-11 pubescent leaflets; leaflets of the lower leaves oblong, of the upper ones linear-lanceolate, 8-15 x 1-3.5 commonly c. 1.5 mm, the terminal being slightly longer, pubescent with fusiform-cylindrical hairs; stipules linear-lanceolate, 4-8 mm long, white-pubescent.

Flowers 8-10 mm long, on slender usually dark-pubescent pedicels 3-7 mm long, in 5-9-flowered loose racemes, on the distal one-third of the 8-30 cm long usually glabrous peduncle; bract triangular, 1-2 mm long, scarious, with a few white and/or dark hairs; bracteoles linear, distal on the pedicel, to 1 mm long, pubescent; calyx 5-6.5 mm long, with a moderately dense pubescence of dark-brown or blackish hairs; teeth lanceolate-subulate, about as long as the tube; standard broadly ovate, slightly notched, as wide as long, without calli but with a pair of nearly parallel thickened lines or folds, emerging from the 2-2.5 mm long claw and diverging usually shortly into the reddish or magenta lamina, with 2 yellowish-green blotches centrally; wings straight, shortest, obovate, auriculate above a slender claw; keel distinctly twisted sideways, triangular in outline, obtuse, dark-red, with 2 small pouches near the auricle, on a long slender claw; ovary sessile, fusiform, densely appressed-pubescent with white hairs, laterally narrowed into a flattened style at the apex, many to 20-ovulate; style incurved, rigid, broad and often twisted at the base, gradually attenuated into a minutely inflexed tip, bearded evenly for most of its length, without hair-tufts behind the stigma.

Pod oblong, 15-30 x 4-5-mm, enclosed in the calyx, the suture deeply impressed, appressed-pubescent or hairs softly spreading, to 20-seeded; seed cordate, flattened, 1.5-2 mm across, dark-brown.

image of FSA2_Swainsona_fis.jpg
Image source: fig. 331B in J.P. Jessop and H.R. Toelken Ed. 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).

Published illustration: Cunningham et al. (1982) Plants of western New South Wales, p. 213.

Distribution:  On stony or rocky places with sandy skeletal or brown soils.

S.Aust.: LE, FR, EA.   N.S.W.

Conservation status: native

Flowering time: Aug. — Dec.

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

Biology: It is not known to be eaten by stock, nor is it reported to be toxic.

Author: Not yet available

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