SPRINGTIME IN TASMANIA - PART 5
Tetratheca labillardierei  
 TETRATHECA                              Tremandraceae

  There are five species of Tetratheca in   Tasmania; all have similar attractive       flowers:

    T. labillardierei  (pictured left)
     Lilac Bells/Black Eyed Susan

    T. pilosa

    T. procumbens 

    T. gunnii  
Shy Susan
     
    T. cillata



 
T. labillardierei (Lilac Bells) is a common component of woodlands and heathlands especially on sandy soils. Leaves narrowly ovate, slightly narrowed into very short stalk, glandular, margins slightly revolute or toothed and is a  much-branched undershrub to 60 cm; leaves, stems, flower stalks and calyces glandular hairy. Flowers mauve, stalked, like those of T.pilosa but larger and with persistent sepals. Flowering spring-summer and widespread from sea level to mountain foothills.  Tas. Vic.

T. pilosa (Black-eyed Susan) is also a shrubby plant to 60 cm. and widespread in heaths and dry forests. Mauve or purple flowers, 4 petals, black stamens, often crowded along the upper part of the stem forming showy heads. Sepals lost as flower opens. Leaves narrow-linear, about 10 mm long. glabrous or hairy, soft with recurved margins. Tas. Vic. NSW. SA

T. procumbens  is like T. pilosa but all parts very small, to 10 cm high. Some botanists view it as a small form of  T. pilosa. Found in wet forests and montane. Tas. endemic.

T. cillata is a rare species which may be found at Green’s Beach near the Asbestos Range National Park, northern Tasmania.  Tas. endemic.

Tetratheca gunnii
TETRATHECA GUNNII
Tremandraceae
Shy Susan

This rare endemic closely resembles the related T.pilosa, but is smaller in its parts and importantly has virtually no anther tube. In other Tetrathecas the anther ends in an extended tube. T. gunnii, like others in this species, has a much higher success rate in seed-setting if cross pollinated, a role taken on in nature by native bees, but Tetrathecas have stamens whose anthers do not have the usual longitudinal slits from which pollen is released - they have terminal spores through which bees release the pollen by vibrating the downward pointing anther, a process known as buzz pollination. 

Tetrathecas do not produce nectar either and
the only reward to pollinators is a small load of pollen. To attract the pollinators the plants
rely on nearby nectar-producing species which flower at the same time.

Since its discovery near Beaconsfield, which is an area of active mining leases, serious work has been done by the Threatened Species unit and the Royal Hobart Botanical Gardens, who propagated plants for reintroduction to the wild.  Fenced enclosures to protect from rabbits and other browsing herbivores, plus artificial pollination  - a tedious, laborious and physically demanding procedure -  has shown excellent results. But it is still under threat due to habitat loss, increased traffic and the likely introduction of Phytophthera cinnamomi, a notorious fungal disease. The work of the Threatened Species unit will be very important in monitoring this beautiful species so that its survival chances
are maximised.  (from a report by R. Skabo)

Tas. endemic

 
BORONIA GUNNII                    Rutaceae   

Is unusual in the genus in that it grows in rocky high-energy flood prone areas along rivers in Tasmania. The stems are very flexible and can almost be tied in a loose knot without breaking.  
Tas. Endemic.
Information Tasmanian Herbarium


Boronia gunnii  
     

Luzula flaccida
LUZULA Spp .                            Juncaceae
Wood-rush
(Luzula flaccida pictured)

Luzula sp. A small rush-like plant with flat more or less hairy leaves. Flower heads terminal, stalked either solitary or several in a loose umbel according to species. Heads
globose or ovoid in shades of  brown and cream. Each flower head consists of many flowers each surrounded by papery bracts, each flower with a perianth of 6 papery
segments, 3 or 6 stamens and 1-celled ovary. Fruit a small nut. Luzula differs from rushes (Juncus spp.) in having hairy leaves and one chambered 3-seeded fruits. The genus is under revision and the number of species in Tasmania is greater than previously thought.
Various common species exist throughout the State. Most species flowering in spring-summer. 
Common throughout Australia 
Information courtesy of Launceston Field Naturalists Club.




HARDENBERGIA VIOLACEAE                Fabaceae
Purple Coral Pea (Pontos Hill form)

Hardenbergia violacea (Pontos Hill form)
Variable shrub or scrambling vine, capable of climbing or trailing.
Ht 2-4m.  W.2-3m.
Leaves: Single, 2-5cm, lanceolate with prominent central and side veins, dark green upper surface, lighter lower surface.
Flowers: Long showy purple sprays arising from the leaf axils.
Flowering sporadic but mainly winter/spring.
Fruit: Long, flat, grey-brown pod.
Habitat/Distribution: Only known from dry hillsides around Sorell.      Also SA, Vic, NSW, Qld.

Information Tasmanian's Natural Flora


PART 1      PART 2            PART 3          PART 4            PART 5        PART 6        PART 7       PART 8

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