Ptilotus from the Greek 'ptilotos' meaning feathered or winged; referring to the hairy flowers. Propinquss from the Latin 'propinquus' meaning a relation, kinsman, or near; referring to the close relationship of this species to several other taxa in this complex.
Distribution and status
Endemic to South Australia and found in a small area in the Gammon Ranges, growing on bare shaly clay soil, on ironstone hills, gypseous breakaways or rocky gullies, with Casuarina over chenopods, or with scattered mallees. Native. Rare in South Australia.
Herbarium region: Flinders Ranges
NRM region: South Australian Arid Lands
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Much branched, strongly divaricate, rounded, subspinescent shrub to 60 cm high. Younger stems striate, glabrous, glaucous, grey-green, older wood brown. Leaves sessile, ovate or obovate, to 3.5 mm long and 1 mm wide, clustered with up to 7 leaves at young stem shoots, fleshy, glabrous on upper surface, lower surface with scattered hairs near base, grey-green, glaucous, apices mucronate, margins flat. Flower-spike short open clusters to 5 cm long, with 10–50 pink or purple flowers. Fruits are creamy with pinkish tinged, ovoid head containing numerous long papery and hairy fruits, each containing one seed. Seeds are dark brown to reddish reinform seed to 2.5 mm long and 2 mm wide. Seed embryo type is peripheral.
Seed collection and propagation
Collect seeds between October and December. Be very careful when collecting this species as the fruits contain fine hairs that may cause an allergic reaction for some people. Collect the fruit heads when dried to a pale straw colour. Each fruit should come off the head easily when fingers are rubbed up the stem. Collect more fruits than required as not all fruits contain viable seed. Be very careful when cleaning this species as the fruits contain fine hairs that may cause an allergic reaction for some people. To clean, rub the fruit heads gently to dislodge the seed at the base of each fruit. 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 two collections, the seed viability were high, ranging from 90% to 100%. Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.
|Location||No. of seeds|
|BGA||102 (0.1 g)||60+||8-Dec-2009||KHB330|
|BGA||670 (1.27 g)||50+||14-Dec-2010||KHB553|