Plants of
South Australia
Commicarpus australis
Nyctaginaceae
Pink Gum-fruit
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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: 3.

Etymology

Commicarpus from the Greek 'kommi' meaning gum and 'karpos' meaning fruit; referring to the glandular anthocarp. Australis means of or from the south, or Australia.

Distribution and status

Found north of the northern Flinders Ranges across to the north-west corner in South Australia. Also found in Western Australia and Northern Territory. Native. Common in South Australia. Uncommon in Northern Territory. Common in Western Australia.
Herbarium regions: North Western, Lake Eyre, Flinders Ranges, Eastern
NRM regions: Alinytjara Wilurara, South Australian Arid Lands
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Glabrous or somewhat puberulent perennial herb, with more or less erect or climbing stems. Leaves ovate, to 4.5 cm long and 4 cm wide, obtuse to cordate at the base, with undulate margins, often similar in colour on both surfaces. Flowers on pedicels with 3-8 funnel-shaped, pinkish flowers in an umbel. Fruits are dark woody brown club-shaped fruit to 10 mm long and 2.5 mm wide, surface covered with knob-like projections and hairs. Very stick. Seeds are rice-grain-like seed found at the fattest part of the fruit.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between November and May. Collect individual fruit by hand, those that are fat and hard. Fruits are very sticky. Place the fruits in a tray to dry for one to two weeks. No further cleaning is required if only fruits collected. 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 100%.

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

3,000 (31.92 g)
50+26-Nov-2010KHB545
Flinders Ranges
100%
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.