Plants of
South Australia
Arthropodium fimbriatum
Liliaceae
Summer Vanilla-lily
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Rare
Vulnerable
Endangered
Critically endangered
Extinct
Data deficient
Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
Marla
Marree
Mount Gambier
Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 7.

Etymology

Arthropodium from the Greek 'arthron' meaning a joint and 'podion' meaning a little foot, alluding to the jointed pedicels. Fimbriatum from the Latin 'fimbriatus' meaning fringed, referring to the wavy margin of the petals.

Distribution and status

Found in the southern part of South Australia from Lake Eyre south to the lower South-east. Also found in Western Australia, Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria. Native. Common in South Australia. Uncommon in Queensland. Common in other States.
Herbarium regions: Gairdner-Torrens, Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Yorke Peninsula, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Stiff, erect, often unbranched lily to 80cm high, with long fibrous roots ending in fusiform tubers. Leaves to 8cm long and 2mm wide, linear. Inflorescence forming a loose raceme or panicle with short bracts at the base of each branch, with 2-4 blue or violet, rarely white flowers in the axil of each bract; drooping, scented; anthers dark-purple, the 2 appendages much shorter, yellow. Fruits are pale-brown ovoid capsule to 15mm long containing numerous seeds. Seeds are black, sectoroid or pyramidal seed to 2mm long and 2mm wide, with smooth or slightly wrinkled surface. Seed embryo type is linear fully developed.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and February. Collect mature capsules, those that are turning a pale straw colour and contain black seeds. Can collect individual capsules or break off the whole spike. Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for two weeks. Then rub the capsules gently by hand to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate the unwanted material. Store the seeds with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. From one collection, the seed viability was high, at 100%.

Seeds stored:
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LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
BGA 
MSB
13,500 (12.28 g)
13,500 (12.28 g)
100+7-Feb-2005DJD111
Northern Lofty
28-Mar-2006100%-18°C
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.