Seeds of South Australia
Ptilotus aervoides (Amaranthaceae)
Mat Mulla Mulla
List of species for Ptilotus
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Seed collecting:
September to December
Herbarium region:
North Western
NRM region:
Alinytjara Wilurara
IBRA region
Mann-Musgrave Block (CER01)Central Ranges
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [WA/NT sp, eastern edge of range]
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 Ptilotus]
SA Flora:
Flora of South Australia Edition 5
Name derivation:
Ptilotus from the Greek 'ptilotos' meaning feathered or winged; referring to the hairy flowers. Aervoides means resembling plants in the genus Aerva.
Found in the far north-west corner of South Australia, growing on clay or ironstone gibber, on Mitchell grass stony plains. Also found in Western Australia and Northern Territory.
Native. Rare in South Australia. Uncommon in Northern Territory. Common in Western Australia.
Plant description:
Prostrate herbs to 4 cm high and 70 cm wide with stems sometimes reddish, densely hairy, glabrescent with age. Leaves obovate, ovate or subspathulate, sparsely hairy, glabrescent with age, basal leaves to 60 mm long and 20 mm wide. Inflorescences mostly axillary, ovoid or cylindrical, to 3 cm long with up to 40 green or cream to brown flowers covered in dense hairs. Flowering between April and October.
Fruit type:
Pale brown, cylindrical fruit-head containing numerous long papery and hairy fruits, each containing one seed.
Seed type:
Brown reniform seed.
Embryo type:
Seed collecting:
Be very careful when collecting this species as the fruits contain fine hairs that may cause an allergic reaction for some people. Collect the fruit heads when dried to a pale straw colour. Each fruit should come off the head easily when fingers are rubbed up the stem. Collect more fruits than required as not all fruits contain viable seed.
Seed cleaning:
Be very careful when cleaning this species as the fruits contain fine hairs that may cause an allergic reaction for some people. To clean, rub the fruit heads gently to dislodge the seed at the base of each fruit. 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.