Plants of
South Australia
Poranthera triandra
Euphorbiaceae
Three-petal Porantha
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Adelaide
Arkaroola
Ceduna
Coober Pedy
Hawker
Innamincka
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Oodnadatta
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Keith
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 2.

Etymology

Poranthera from the Greek 'porus' meaning opening or pore and 'anthera' meaning anther; referring to the terminal pores of the anther cells. Triandra from the Greek 'treis' meaning three and 'andros' meaning man or stamen; referring to the male flowers which have 3 stamens.

Distribution and status

Found in the southern part of South Australia, growing mainly in or near coastal areas on Sand over limestone. Also found in Western Australia and the Northern Territory. Native. Common in South Australia. Uncommon in the other states.
Herbarium regions: Eyre Peninsula, 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 Murray-Darling Basin, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Tiny prostrate to erect annual herb to 3 cm high. Leaves alternating along the stems to opposite each other, elliptic to oblanceolate or obovate, to 5.5 mm long and 2 mm wide, green sometime with red-mark. Inflorescence in dense clusters at the tops of the stems with white flowers, male and female flowers are of a similar size and occur of the same plant. The flowers have a deeply 3-lobed (rarely 4- or 5-lobed) calyx and 5 shorter inconspicuous petals which are absent on occasions, and male flowers with 3 stamens. This species is similar to Poranthera microphylla which is usually a larger plant and the flowers have 4 calyx segments but the male flowers always have 5 stamens. Flowering between August and November. Fruits are green-yellow depressed-globular capsule to 1.5 mm across, 3 lobes with 6-seeds. Seeds are brown sectoroid seed to 0.7 mm long and 0.5 mm wide, covered in white tuberculate. Seed embryo type is spatulate fully developed.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between October and December. Collect individual mature capsules, those that are drying off, fat and contain dark hard seeds or pull out the whole plant (annual) to allow capsules to continue to mature. Green capsules can be collected if the seeds are dark and hard. Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then gently rub the capsules with a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieves 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.

Seeds stored:
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LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
 
MSB

34,600 (1.58 g)
5030-Oct-2007RJB75389
South Eastern
100%
BGA 
MSB
27,300 (2.09 g)
27,300 (2.09 g)
5030-Oct-2007RJB75538
South Eastern
19-Sep-2008100%-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.