L., Sp. Pl. 457 (i753).
Synonymy: Not Applicable
Common name: Caper sparge.
Erect glabrous more or less glaucous biennial; stems solitary, 50-150 cm tall, 0.5-1.2 cm thick when mature, often with a few sterile branches at the base and numerous terminal fertile branches from upper axils, each fertile branch itself 2-5-branched; leaves opposite, sessile, more or less decussate, linear to oblong-lanceolate, 30-150 x 5-25 mm (to 80 mm long in S.Aust.) acute to obtuse, often mucronulate, sometimes slightly cordate at the base, entire, sometimes slightly recurved, with one prominent nerve, on lower sterile branches smaller; leaves on fertile ray- and raylet-branchlets shorter, triangular-ovate, to 60 x to 40 mm, obtuse, acute or acuminate, base asymmetrically cordate, paler green with several palmate nerves arising from the petiole.
cyathia solitary, terminal in upper axils of fertile branches, on peduncles less than 1 mm long; involucre conical, c. 2.5 mm long, pale-green; glands lunate, c. 2 mm long, with 2 clavate horn-like appendages c. 1 mm long; styles divided to the middle into 2 filiform appendages.
capsule ellipsoid-globose, 3-lobed, 9-13 x 12-16 mm, spongy outside, smooth, rugose when dry, with a longitudinal furrow along each ridge on the back; seed ovoid, 5-6 x c. 4 mm, brown or grey, reticulate-rugulose; caruncle peltate, cup-like.
||Euphorbia lathyrus twig, cyathium, fruit, coccus and seed.
Image source: fig 401j in Jessop J.P. & Toelken H.R. (Ed.) 1986. Flora of South Australia (4th edn).|
Hegi (1924) Illustrierte Flora v on Mittel-Europa 5, 1:fig. 1758; Ross-Craig (1969) Drawings Brit. Pl. 26:pl. 35).
All States. Native of Europe; sometimes cultivated as an ornamental and naturalised throughout the world.
Flowering time: Aug. — Jan.
SA Distribution Map based
on current data relating to
specimens held in the
State Herbarium of South Australia
Not yet available