Plants of
South Australia
Dissocarpus biflorus var. villosus
Chenopodiaceae
Shaggy Twin-flower Saltbush
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Rare
Vulnerable
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Extinct
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Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
Marla
Marree
Mount Gambier
Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Etymology

Dissocarpus from the Greek 'dissos' meaning two fold and 'carpos' meaning fruit, referring to the paired fruits of the original species. Biflorus from the Latin 'bi' meaninf two and 'florus' meaning flower' referring to the species double (or three) flowers that are united into a small woolly ball. Villosus from the Latin 'villus' meaning hair, alluding to the fruit of this variety which is covered in long shaggy (villous) hairs.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and found in the central part from Marla to Port Augusta, growing in heavy soil. Native. Uncommon in South Australia.
Herbarium regions: North Western, Lake Eyre, Gairdner-Torrens, Eyre Peninsula
NRM regions: Alinytjara Wilurara, Eyre Peninsula, South Australian Arid Lands
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Sprawling to erect perennial shrub to 60 cm tall. Leaves linear, semi-terete to 10 cm long, appearing grey from a dense covering of simple, appressed hairs. Flowers 2 united into a small ball. This variety is distinguish from the other variety found in South Australia by having long shaggy (villous) hairs covering the fruiting perianth, where as D. biflorus var. biflorus have short woolly hairs covering the fruiting perianth. Flowering throughout the year. Fruit woody covered in long shaggy hairs with 2 cylindrical widely divergent points. Seed embryo type is peripheral

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and December. Collect fruit that are large and hard from the plant or off the ground. Place the fruits in a tray and leave to dry for 1-2 weeks. No further cleaning is required if only the fruits are collected. Store the dried fruit heads with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place. Germination by seed scarification (covering structure removed).