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

Family: Leguminosae
Ulex europaeus

Citation: L., Sp. Pl. 741 (1753).

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Furze, gorse.

Rigid more or less hairy spinescent shrub, 60-200 cm, with main stems erect or ascending, striate, densely branched in younger parts but eventually bare at the base; young twigs and spines somewhat glaucous, mature hirsute to tomentose, with grey to reddish-brown hairs; phyllodes linear, spiny, terminal 12-25 rarely to 30 mm long, stout, straight, grooved lengthwise, glabrous to pubescent; bract ovate-acute, villous, c. 2 mm long, persistent.

Flowers mostly solitary, axillary, on villous pedicels 5-7 mm long; bracteoles attached at the base of the calyx, triangular to ovate, c. 3 mm long or more, 2 or more mm wide; calyx 12-20 mm long, distinctly 2-lipped, with more or less patent golden hairs; petals 15-20 mm long, clear-yellow, wings straight; ovary and the base of the style pubescent, stigma capitate.

Pod oblong, 10-20 mm long, densely villous, exceeding the calyx; seed cordate, 2.5-3 x c. 2 mm, dark-brown-blackish, shiny, with a white 2-lobed caruncle arising from the hilum.

image of FSA2_Ulex_eur.jpg Ulex europaeus twig, ovary, connate stamens, legumes and seed.
Image source: fig 384c in Jessop J.P. & Toelken H.R. (Ed.) 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).

Published illustration: Parsons (1973) Noxious weeds of Victoria, figs 186 & 187; Hegi (1924) Illustrierte Flora von Mittel-Europa 4, 3:t. 158.

Distribution:  S.Aust.: NL, MU, YP, SL, KI, SE.   W.Aust.; Qld; N.S.W.; Vic.; Tas.   native in western Europe, widely introduced elsewhere, planted as a hedge and spontaneous in many parts of the settled districts.

Conservation status: naturalised

Flowering time: most of the year.

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

Biology: No text

Author: Not yet available

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