Plants of
South Australia
Maireana aphylla
Chenopodiaceae
Leafless Bluebush
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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: 2.

Etymology

Maireana, named after Charles Antoine Lemaire (1800–71), a French self-taught botanist and professor of botany at Ghent. Aphylla, from the Greek 'a', meaning without and 'phyllon,' meaning leaf, referring to leaf-less stems.

Distribution and status

Most commonly found in periodically waterlogged clay soils in the Arid Lands, Murraylands, Mid and Lower North regions of South Australia. Recorded in all mainland States. Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the others States.
Herbarium regions: North Western, Lake Eyre, Gairdner-Torrens, Flinders Ranges, Eastern, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Alinytjara Wilurara, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Branched shrub 0.5-2 m high, predominantly dioecious; branchlets striate, almost glabrous to somewhat woolly, often spiny; leaves small, alternate, 1-4 rarely to 8 mm long; sparsely to densely woolly; very shortly spurred at the base. Flowers and fruits from June to September in the North and January to July in the South. Fruits are fruiting perianth straw-coloured and papery when dry; tube hemispherical to turbinate, 1-2 mm high; wing simple, horizontal, c. 8 mm diameter, with a single radial slit; upper perianth sparsely woolly. Seeds are ellipsoid to circular, brown, convex seed. Seed embryo type is peripheral.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and September. Collect dry papery fruits. Check that well developed seed is present before making a collection. Shake or strip fruits into a vessel. Remove twigs and other plant material