Seeds of South Australia
Isolepis stellata (Cyperaceae)
Star Club-sedge
List of species for Isolepis
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Seed collecting:
October to March
Herbarium regions:
Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, South East
IBRA regions
Glenelg Plain (NCP02)Naracoorte Coastal Plain
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   [likes water]
Lucindale (NCP03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [likes water]
Tintinara (NCP04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [Gum Lagoon; likes water]
Kangaroo Island (KAN01)Kanmantoo
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Fleurieu (KAN02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [decline in habitat quality]
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Broughton (FLB02) 
 Endangered   (IUCN: EN A2ac)   (Definite Decline)   [Tott Hills]
Eyre Hills (EYB03)Eyre Yorke Block
 Critically Endangered   (IUCN: CR B2ab(i,ii,iii))   (Definite Decline)
Murray Mallee (MDD02)Murray Darling Depression
 Endangered   (IUCN: EN B2ab(i,ii,iii))   (Probable Decline)
Lowan Mallee (MDD04) 
 Vulnerable   (IUCN: VU B2ab(i,ii,iii))   (Probable Decline)
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 Isolepis]
Name derivation:
Isolepis from the Greek 'isos' meaning equal and 'lepis' meaning scale; referring to the glumes. Stellata from the Latin 'stellatus' meaning with spreading rays, stellate or star-like; referring to the star-like shaped of the fruit.
Found on Kangaroo Island, Mount Lofty Ranges and the South-east in South Australia, growing in seasonally wet area and seepage. Also found in Western Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania. 
Native. Rare in South Australia. Rare in New South Wales and Tasmania. Common in the other states.
Plant description:
Slender tufted annual sedge to 6 cm high, stems rather rigid but very slender. Leaf blades setaceous, to 2.5 cm long or reduced to short points. Bract 1, erect or more or less thrown to one side, usually exceeding the inflorescence and to 7 mm long. Spikelets up to 8 in the cluster, rarely less than 3, densely packed and stellately spreading, oblong or ovoid-oblong, very obtuse, to 4 mm long, greenish, several-flowered, glumes rather spreading, the tip mucronate and also spreading, keel stout and broad, green sides stained with brown, each with 1 or 2 slender nerves. Flowering between October and February. Isolepis stellata can be easily recognised by the stout, recurved mucro at the glume apex.
Fruit type:
Brown fruit-head in clusters at the end of the stems.
Seed type:
Dark brown to black ovoid-triangular seed to 0.7 mm long and 0.6 mm wide with a small tuberculate surface.
Embryo type:
Seed collecting:
Collect fruits either by picking off the mature heads, those turning brown and come-off easily or pull out the whole plant.
Seed cleaning:
Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for one to two weeks. Then rub the heads with a rubber bung to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate any unwanted material. Be careful, as the seeds are very small. Seeds are black and hard. 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 three collections the seed viability were high, ranging from 85% to 100%.
Seeds stored:
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
of plants
Collection number
Collection location
% ViabilityStorage
20000 (0.77 g)
20000 (0.77 g)
South Eastern
BGA129000 (5.18 g)503-Dec-2007RJB76069
Southern Lofty
BGA10800 (0.45 g)504-Nov-2007RJB75497
Southern Lofty
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.