Plants of
South Australia
Carpobrotus modestus
Aizoaceae
Inland Pig-face
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
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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: 3.

Etymology

Carpobrotus from the Greek 'karpos' meaning fruit and 'brotos' meaning edible, referring to the succulent fruit which was eaten traditionally by Aboringinal people. Modestus means mild or modest but unsure what this is referring to, maybe compared with, the more robust species C. rossii.

Distribution and status

Found in the southern part of South Australia, distinctly inland in distribution compared with the other species, growing on sandy or clay soils. Also found in Western Australia and Victoria. Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Eyre Peninsula, Murray, Southern Lofty, South Eastern, Green Adelaide
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Prostrate succulent perennial herb with stems to 35 cm long and 6 mm thick. Leaves glaucous or tinged reddish or brown to 70 mm long and 9 mm wide. Flowers 20 mm in diameter, sessile or subsessile, pink to purple-blue. Flowering between August and November. Fruits are large purple fleshy, ellipsoid to obovoid-oblong fruit to 20 mm long. Seeds are flat brown reniform seed to 1.2 mm long and 0.7 mm wide, with a mesh-like surface. Seed embryo type is peripheral.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between November and January. Collect mature fruits, those that are fat and turning red with brown seeds inside. Break open the fruits and wash the content in water. Drain the liquid leaving behind the seeds. Place the wet seeds onto paper towels and leave to dry. 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. Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily without any treatment.