Plants of
South Australia
Centipeda pleiocephala
Compositae
Tall Sneezeweed
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Rare
Vulnerable
Endangered
Critically endangered
Extinct
Data deficient
Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
Marla
Marree
Mount Gambier
Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Etymology

Centipeda from Latin for centipede, from 'centi' meaning hundred and 'ped' meaning foot, referring to the creeping stems. Pleiocephala from the Greek 'pleio' meaning many and 'kephale' meaning head, referring to the plant's habit of producing offshoots.

Distribution and status

Found in the north and north-eastern parts of South Australia and along the Murray River growing in moist sandy, silty or clay soils in floodplains and the edges of watercourses. Also found in all mainland States. Native. Common in South Australia. Rare in Victoria. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: North Western, Lake Eyre, Gairdner-Torrens, Murray
NRM regions: Alinytjara Wilurara, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Erect slender annual to 40 cm high with branches glabrous, except for a few cottony hairs on young growth and occasionally in axils. Leaves more or less oblong to narrowly obovate to 25 mm long and 7 mm wide; serrate, surfaces glabrous, resin-dotted. Flower heads yellow-green hemispherical to biconvex when fully open to 4.5 mm diameter with 2–4 per cluster in leaf axil. Flowering between September and November. Fruits are dense brown daisy head. Seeds are pale brown ovoid seed to 2.3 mm long and 0.6 mm wide, with scattered hairs on the narrower part. Seed embryo type is spatulate.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between January and November. Collect heads that are drying off and turning brown. Place the heads in a tray for a week to dry. Then rub the heads gently with your hands or a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate the unwanted material. Be careful as the seeds are very small. 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 one collection, the seed viability was high, at 95%. Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.

Seeds stored:
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LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
BGA 
MSB
38,000 (3.47 g)
38,000 (3.47 g)
13-Mar-2007RJB70980
Lake Eyre
1-Aug-200795%-18°C
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.