Seeds of South Australia
Ipomoea lonchophylla (Convolvulaceae)
Common Cow-vine
List of species for Ipomoea
Click on an image to enlarge it
Seed collecting:
January to December
Herbarium region:
Lake Eyre
NRM region:
South Australian Arid Lands
IBRA regions
Torrens (GAW06)Gawler
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [does not like salt]
Warriner (SSD04)Simpson Strzelecki Dunefields
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [needs clay flats]
Breakaways (STP01)Stony Plains
 Least Concern   [needs clay flats; plenty of habitat here]
Oodnadatta (STP02) 
 Near Threatened   [needs clay flats]
Murnpeowie (STP03) 
 Least Concern   [needs clay flats]
Witjira (STP06) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   [needs clay flats]
Baltana (STP07) 
 Least Concern   [needs clay flats]
Sturt Stony Desert (CHC02)Channel Country
 Near Threatened   [needs clay flats]
Coongie (CHC06) 
 Near Threatened   [needs clay flats]
Lake Pure (CHC07) 
 Near Threatened   [needs clay flats]
RSCA map:
Regional Species Conservation Assessments per IBRA subregion. Please click the thumbnail map.
AVH map:
Australian distribution map (external link)
SA Census:
Census of South Australian plants (external link)     [genus Ipomoea]
SA Flora:
Flora of South Australia Edition 5
Name derivation:
Ipomoea from the Greek 'ips' meaning a worm (mistakenly supposed by Linnaeus to mean the bindweed) and 'homoios' meaning like; referring to its twining habit. Lonchophylla from the Greek 'lonchos' meaning spear-shaped and 'phyllon' meaning a leaf.
Found in the north-eastern part of South Australia, growing on clay soils in tussock grasslands. Also found in Western Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland and New South Wales.
Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the other states.
Plant description:
Glabrous to sparsely hairy annual herb with trailing stems. Leaves ovate to ovate-lanceolate, to 10 cm long and 4 cm wide, acute to obtuse, mucronate, base attenuate to barely truncate. Inflorescence axillary with a single small white funnel-shaped flower. Flowers throughout the year but mainly between November and June.
Fruit type:
Brown globular capsule, with a persistent style base and splitting longitudinally into 4 valves.
Seed type:
Dark brown to black sectoroid seed to 4.5 mm long and 4 mm wide, with dense hairs.
Embryo type:
Seed collecting:
Collect capsules that are maturing, turning brown and contain hard seeds inside. Capsules can be opened or unopened and some seed can be collected from the ground under the plant.
Seed cleaning:
Place the capsules in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the capsules gently by hand or with a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate the 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.
Seed viability:
From one collection, the seed viability was high, at 95%.
Seed germination:
This species has physical dormancy that needs to be overcome for the seed to germinate (e.g. nicking the seed coat).
Seeds stored:
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
of plants
Collection number
Collection location
% ViabilityStorage
2500 (58.1 g)
2500 (58.1 g)
Lake Eyre
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.