Seeds of South Australia
Isolepis trachysperma (Cyperaceae)
Grassy Club-sedge
List of species for Isolepis
Display more images
Click on an image to enlarge it
Seed collecting:
September to March
Herbarium regions:
Northern Lofty, Murray, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Kangaroo Island, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
IBRA regions
Kangaroo Island (KAN01)Kanmantoo
 Data Deficient   [questionably native; all recents observations are prob I hookeriana]
Fleurieu (KAN02) 
 Data Deficient   [could be introduced]
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Data Deficient   [possible introduction; taxonomic issues]
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. Trachycarpa from the Greek 'trachys' meaning  rough and 'spermus' meaning seed.
Found on Kangaroo Island, Mount Lofty Ranges and the lower South-east in South Australia, growing in seasonally wet areas. Also found in Victoria. From South Africa and endemic to the Cape Peninsula, perhaps introduced in Australia.
Possible introduced to Australia from South Africa.
Plant description:
Tufted annual or short-lived perennial sedge, stems filiform, to 12 cm high. Leaves reduced, blade to 7 mm long. Bract shorter than to slightly exceeding inflorescence. Spikelets 1–4 per inflorescence, to 5.5 mm long, glumes acute, mucronate, sides 2–3 nerved, usually dark brown, to 1.9 mm long. Flowers in spring and summer. Isolepis trachysperma superficially resembles I. hookeriana from which it is distinguished by darker coloured glumes and the nut which is lighter coloured, tuberculate, with diamond-shaped reticulate patterning.
Fruit type:
Few brown fruit-head in clusters at the end of the stems.
Seed type:
Yellow globular seed to 0.8 mm long and 0.5 mm wide with diamond-shaped mesh-like 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 yellow 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.