Scleranthus from the Greek 'skleros' meaning hard and 'anthos' meaning flower; alluding to the hardened fruiting calyx. Pungens from Latin meaning sharply pointed, spiny; referring to the leaves pungent ends.
Distribution and status
Found in the central part of South Australia, from the Gammon Ranges to the Kangaroo Island. growing on dry sandy soil using in rocking places. Also found in New South Wales. Native. Common in South Australia. Common in New South Wales.
Herbarium regions: Gairdner-Torrens, Flinders Ranges, Eastern, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Yorke Peninsula, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, Green Adelaide
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)
Rigid perennial herb to 30 cm high, with many ascending stems. Leaves linear-lanceolate to 15 mm long, rigid, pungent-pointed. Flowers sessile in clusters, mostly terminal rarely in axils of leaves, and each flower sheltered by a broad bract, flowers white with light green centre. Flowering between August and October. Fruits are pale brown conical capsule. Seed embryo type is peripheral.
Seed collection and propagation
Collect seeds between October and December. Collect heads that are drying off and turning brown, these should contain small brown seeds. Be careful as plant can be prickly. Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for 1 to 2 weeks. Then rub the dried heads with a rubber bung to dislodge the fruits. Use a sieve to separate any unwanted material. Seeds are enclosed in the hard fruit and can be stored as is. Store the fruit 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 average, at 75%.
|No. of seeds
|6,900 (9.72 g)
6,900 (9.72 g)