Plants of
South Australia
Chamaescilla corymbosa var. corymbosa
Liliaceae
Blue Stars
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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: 6.

Etymology

Chamaescilla from the Greek 'chamai' meaning dwarf and 'skilla' meaning a squill or sea onion, a liliaceous plant of the Mediterranean region. Corymbosa from the Latin 'corymbosus' meaning a cluster of flowers.

Distribution and status

Found southern South Australia from the southern Flinders Ranges to the lower South-east growing in seasonally moist soils. Also found in Western Australia, Victoria and Tasmania. Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Flinders Ranges, 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

Small annual herb, with leaves basal, grass-like, channelled, with tuberous roots. Stem erect to15 cm high, bearing near the tip, a loose corymb of 2 to many bright-blue flowers, spirally twisting after flowering separately. Flowering between August and October. Fruits are brown capsules with 3 laterally compressed lobes, acute on the dorsal edges, truncate at the tip. Seeds are glossy black, semi-flat seed to to 1.5 mm diameter. Seed embryo type is linear fully developed.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between October and November. Collect mature capsules, those that are turning a pale straw colour and contain black seeds. Can collect individual capsules or break off the whole spike. Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the capsules 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 low, at 20%.

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

3,590 (2.88 g)
13-Dec-2004DJD84
Southern Lofty
BGA7,000 (2.8 g)50+27-Oct-2005MKJ92
Southern Lofty
9-Aug-200620%-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.