Heliotropium from the Greek 'helios', meaning sun and 'tropos', meaning turn, probably alluding to an early belief that the flowers turned to face the sun. Pachyphyllum from the Greek 'pachys', meaning thick and 'phyllon, meaning leaf.
Distribution and status
Found in the north-eastern part of South Australia, at Mount Fitton and Cooper Creek area, growing on calcrete rises, red sand plain and in skeletal soils on sandstone range. Also found in Western Australia and Northern Territory. Native. Very rare in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: North Western, Lake Eyre, Eastern
NRM regions: Alinytjara Wilurara, South Australian Arid Lands
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Perennial, ascending to spreading-ascending herb to 60 cm tall, with dense silky hairs on the stems, leaves and calyx. Leaves elliptic, ovate to obovate to 40 mm long and 18 mm wide' plain to slightly rugose, flat (and often very slightly revolute), dense, silky hairs. Inflorescence long spike with white to pale yellow bell-shaped flowers. Flowering throughout the year, depending on rain. Fruits are brown ovate capsule, hairy. Seeds are whitish to pale brown sectoroid seed to 2.5 mm long and 1.5 mm wide, covered in long white hairs. Seed embryo type is spathulate fully developed.
Seed collection and propagation
Collect seeds between January and December. Collect mature capsule, those that are drying off, turning brown and containing dark, hard seeds inside. Can collect individual fruit cluster or break off whole heads. Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the fruits 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 two collections, the seed viability was average, at 60%.
|Location||No. of seeds|
|BGA||300 (0.427 g)||50+||22-Apr-2015||DJD3117|
|Date||Result||T0||T50||Pre-treatment | Germination medium | Incubator: Photoperiod / Thermoperiod|
|May-13||61%||7||15||250 mg/L gibberellic acid 48 h;|
12/12; / 20Â°C
12/12; / 20Â°C