Plants of
South Australia
Caladenia argocalla
Orchidaceae
Large White Spider-orchid
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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
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Oodnadatta
Renmark
Wudinna
Keith
Yunta
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Etymology

Caladenia from the Greek 'kallos' meaning beauty and 'aden' meaning a gland, referring to the colourful labellum and the glistening glands at the base of the column that are present in many of the species. Argocalla from the Greek 'argos' meaning white and 'kallos' meaning beautiful, referring to its flower.

Distribution and status

Endemic to South Australia and restricted to the Mount Lofty Ranges growing on hills and slopes in eucalyptus and Allocasuarina verticillata open woodland with a herbaceous understorey. Native. Endangered in South Australia. Endangered in Australia (EPBC Act).
Herbarium regions: Northern Lofty, Murray, Southern Lofty
NRM region: Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Annual herb growing from an underground tuber, with a single dull green, hairy, linear to narrow lance-shaped leaf to 220 mm long and 18 mm wide appearing in April or May. Leaves or flowers do not appear every year. Inflorescence on a long slender stalk to 60 cm high with one, (sometimes two) white to greenish-white flowers. Perianth segments are white to greenish-white with narrow, dark central stripes. Petals and lateral sepals are spreading then drooping, with the dorsal sepal incurved. Petals with dark-red, glandular filiform tips that are not perfumed. The labellum is ovate-cordate and strongly recurved. The lamina is white-green or crimson, margins fringed with teeth and 6 to 8 rows of crimson, red or white club-shaped calli extending nearly to apex in the middle. Flowering between September and October. Fruits are pale-brown hairy, papery ellipsoid capsule containing numerous tiny seeds.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between October and November. Collect fat capsules as they start to dry and turn brown. Pods will split and release the seeds quickly and will require monitoring. To increase the chances of collecting mature pods, it is recommended that a small breathable bag (ie. Organza bags) be used to enclose the developing capsules. Place the capsules in a container that will hold fine seeds and leave to dry for a few weeks or until the capsule split. Then carefully hold the capsule and tap it gently to release the seeds. 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, refrigerator or in liquid nitrogen.

Seeds stored:
  Hide
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
Number
of plants
Date
collected
Collection number
Collection location
Date
stored
% ViabilityStorage
temperature
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
30-Nov-2007J. Quarmby
Murray
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
15-Nov-2007J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
15-Nov-2007J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
13-Dec-2005D. Kilpin
Murray
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
BGA33,000 (0.012 g)112-Nov-2012Erica Rees1
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201670%-80°C
BGA115,000 (0.0424 g)45-Nov-2015D. Kilpin
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201685%-80°C
BGA650,000 (0.235 g)16 podsK. Brewer
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201685%-80°C
BGA70,000 (0.025 g)2 podsK. Brewer
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201680%-80°C
BGA77,000 (0.0117 g)1Clare
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201666%-80°C
13-Dec-2005D. Kilpin
Murray
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
BGA690,000 (0.248 g)20+6-Oct-2014KHB843
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-201680%-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
5-Dec-2005J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
28-Nov-2001D. Bickerton
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
1-05-20J. Quarmby
Northern Lofty
1-Nov-2016N/C-80°C
BGA539,000 (0.199 g)171-Dec-2016Kaiser Stuhl
Murray
1-Nov-2017N/C-80°C
BGA280,100 (0.1 g)1222-Nov-2017D. Kilpin
Northern Lofty
30-Jun-2018N/C-18°C
BGA44,800 (0.016 g)223-Nov-2017Amanda Pearce
Southern Lofty
30-Jun-2018N/C-18°C
BGA8,600 (0.0033 g)117-Nov-2018J.J.Smith
Southern Lofty
24-Apr-2019N/C-18°C
BGA270,600 (0.097 g)714-Nov-2018D.Kilpin's Property
Murray
24-Apr-2019N/C-18°C
BGA53,000 (0.019 g)21-Nov-2019K.H.Brewer
Southern Lofty
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA15,000 (0.0055 g)114-Nov-2019Deep Creek
Southern Lofty
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA742,500 (0.26 g)622-Oct-2018D.Kilpin's Property
Murray
24-Jun-2020 -18°C
BGA47,000 (0.02 g)319-Nov-2019Altman Road
Southern Lofty
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA462,000 (0.17 g)1619-Nov-2019D.Kilpin
Murray
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA784,000 (0.28 g)177-Nov-2019D.Kilpin's property
Murray
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C, -80°C
30-Nov-2007J. Quarmby
Murray
24-Jun-2020N/C-80°C
BGA308,000 (0.11 g)1319-Nov-2019Kaiser Stuhl CP
Murray
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA28,000 (0.01 g)121-Nov-2019R.Lawrence
Southern Lofty
24-Jun-2020N/C-18°C
BGA70,000 (0.025 g)419-Nov-2019Roesslers, Springton
Murray
24-Jun-2020N/C-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.