Plants of
South Australia
Eurychorda complanata
Flat Cord-rush
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Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion.
Least concern
Near threatened
Critically endangered
Data deficient
Coober Pedy
Mount Gambier
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Botanical art

Kath Alcock paintings: 2

Prior names

Restio complanatus


Eurychorda possible from the Greek 'eury' meaning broad and 'khorde' meaning chord or sting, referring to the string-like stems or that the stems were used as string. Complanata means flattened, referring to the flattened stems.

Distribution and status

Currently known only from the western side of Kangaroo Island in South Australia, with an old record from the lower South-east, growing on the edge of creeks in damp heath. Also found in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. Native. Very rare in South Australia. Common in the other States.
Herbarium regions: Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions: Kangaroo Island, South East
AVH map: SA distribution map (external link)

Plant description

Soft drooping perennial sedge with flattened, glabrous stems to 100 cm long. Leaves reduced to small scales at the base of the culms. The flat, wiry culms have small drooping branchlets of male and female flowers. Flowering between October to February. Fruits are brown spike at the tip of stems. Seeds are tiny brown ellipsoid seed to 1.2 mm long and 0.8 mm wide, with a fine reticulated surface. Seed embryo type is broad.

Seed collection and propagation

Collect seeds between November and April. Collection mature heads, those turning brown. Either cut the whole heads or strip the fruit from the heads with your hands. Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the heads with a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate any 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.

Fire Response

Obligate re-sprouter and re-seeder. Seedlings observed as well as basal resprouting from adult plants that were not completely burnt.

Longevity: >20 years

Time to flowering: 4 to 5 years

Recovery Work

In 2020-2021 this species was assessed post-fire in 1 year and 2 year old fire scars. Further populations will be assessed and seeds collected on Kangaroo Island in 2021–2022. Germination screening testing the response to fire cues will be undertaken in 2021.This project was supported by the Project Phoenix program.

Seeds stored:
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
of plants
Collection number
Collection location
% ViabilityStorage
BGA600 (0.4268 g)54-May-2006DJD481
Kangaroo Island
BGA820 (0.34 g)615-Nov-2006TST95
Kangaroo Island
BGA8,000 (4.06 g)513-Dec-2016DJD3241
Kangaroo Island
28-Jun-2021100%+5°C, -18°C, -80°C
BGA12,400 (4.379 g)43-Nov-2022TST1503
Kangaroo Island
20-Jun-2023100%-18°C, -80°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.
Germination table: