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Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia species Fact Sheet

Trifolium fragiferum

Citation: L., Sp. Pl. 772 (1753) var. fragiferum.

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Strawberry clover.

Usually more or less hairy perennial; stems prostrate, rooting at the nodes, 2-40 cm long, or tufted with stems short and not rooting; leaves on 1-10 cm long petioles, arising from the base of the plant; leaflets on petiolules 0.5-1 mm, ovate, elliptic or obcordate, 3-20 mm, obtuse or retuse, with very prominent close-set veins forked and projecting from the margin as minute mucros, somewhat glaucous; stipules lanceolate-subulate, to 10 mm or more long, markedly veined, membranous.

Flowers numerous 20-50 (or more), on pedicels c. 0.5 mm long, each subtended by a lanceolate 2-4 mm long bract, the lowest being the biggest and several more or less united into an irregular involucre at the base of the head; heads 10-14 mm wide, hemispherical in flower, 10-30 mm long, globose, ellipsoid or irregularly cylindrical in fruit, on peduncles as long as or longer than the leaves; calyx 10-nerved, at first cylindrical, c. 4 mm long, densely sericeous on the upper lip which is prolonged, greatly inflated and reticulate-veined in fruit; lower lip with 3 teeth, hardly pubescent, unchanged in the fruiting stage; calyx teeth subulate-acuminate, subequal, c. 1.5 mm long, shorter than the tube; corolla pink, 6-7 mm long, standard narrow-obovate, longest, persistent in fruit.

Pod enclosed, subovate, c. 2 ram, leathery, brown, 1-seeded; seed cordate-subglobose, green-yellow with dark spots.

Published illustration: Hegi (1924) Illustrierte Flora von Mittel-Europa 4, 3:t. 164.

Distribution:    W.Aust.; ?Qld; N.S.W.; Vic.; Tas.   Native to Europe.

Conservation status: naturalised

Flowering time: Nov. — April.

SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia

Biology: The calyx upper lip inflates after flowering into a reticulate hairy bladder, its 2 sharp teeth protruding over those of the lower lip; the whole head bearing some resemblance to a strawberry.

Taxonomic notes: Much of the variation in habit, size and indumentum is induced by the environment as plants from dry or wet shady places are significantly different. Smaller plants, with rigid short stems, identified as var. pulchellum Lange (1865) Meddel. Nat. Floren 2, 7:169 from SL are probably small plants of var. fragiferum.

Author: Not yet available

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