Plants of
South Australia
Cardamine papillata
Cruciferae
Forest Bitter-cress
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
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Rare
Vulnerable
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Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
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Oodnadatta
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Etymology

Cardamine from the Greek 'kardamon' a name given by Dioscorides for a species of cress, an Indian spice and derived from the Greek 'cardia' meaning heart and 'damaein' meaning to blind, alluding to the reputed heart-strengthening effects of the plant. Papillata from the Latin 'papillatus' meaning bearing papillae (small rounded protuberances), referring to the warty margin of the leaves and fruits.

Distribution and status

Found on Kangaroo Island, southern Mount Lofty Ranges and the lower South-east in South Australia growing in hilly, forest areas. Also found in New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. Native. Rare in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Kangaroo Island, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Small erect or ascending annual or perennial herb to 25 cm high; glabrous or papillose. Basal leaves to 7 cm long, forming a persistent rosette; simple or pinnate, lateral pinnae circular, terminal pinna ovate to cordate. Stem leaves, if present variable in shape, upper leaves much reduced, margins sometimes papillose. Flowers usually few along a spike with white flower. Flowers in winter to spring. Fruits are long pale brown pods to 35 mm long, splitting into two, sometime papillose. Seeds are small orange flat reniform seeds to 1.5 mm long and 1 mm wide. Seed embryo type is bent.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between September and December. Collect maturing pods those turning pale brown with yellowish seeds inside. Be gentle with the pods as they split open easily. Place the pods in a tray and cover with paper to prevent seeds from popping out and leave to dry for a week. Then rub the dried pods 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 95%. This species has physiological dormancy that need to be overcome for the seed to germinate.

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
13,100 (2.14 g)
13,100 (2.14 g)
5021-Sep-2007RJB74356
Southern Lofty
19-Sep-200895%-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.