Plants of
South Australia
Craspedia variabilis
Compositae
Bachelor Buttons
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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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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 4.

Etymology

Craspedia from the Greek 'kraspedon' meaning a hem or border, referring to the woolly fringes on the leaves of the type species or the feathery pappus of some species. Variabilis from Latin meaning changeable or variable.

Distribution and status

Found in the southern part of South Australia, growing on sandy to clay-loam soils (sometimes very shallow). Also found in all States except the Northern Territory. Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Lake Eyre, Flinders Ranges, Eastern, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Yorke Peninsula, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Erect hairy herb with thick roots and with 1 to several flowering scapes to 50 cm high. Leaves in a basal rosette and cauline, narrow-spatulate to 13 cm long, and 20 mm wide; broad-acute, pale to olive-green, with glandular hairs and multi-septate hairs and often with very sparse fine woolly hairs, (particularly near margins). Flower heads spherical with dense golden-yellow flowers. Flowering in spring and summer. Fruits are yellow-white, globular daisy-head. Seeds are brown ovoid seed to 4 mm long and 2 mm wide, covered in white hairs. Seed embryo type is spatulate fully developed.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between October and March. Collect heads that are drying off, fluffy and turning yellow-white with hard brown seeds. Pick off whole heads or pluck off mature seeds with your fingers. Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the heads 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 one collection, the seed viability was high, at 80%. 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
14,600 (14.64 g)
14,600 (14.64 g)
100+12-Oct-2005DJD137
South Eastern
14-Sep-200680%-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.