Seeds of South Australia
Thelymitra albiflora (Orchidaceae)
White Sun-orchid
List of species for Thelymitra
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Seed collecting:
December to January
Herbarium regions:
Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Southern Lofty, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
IBRA regions
Glenelg Plain (NCP02)Naracoorte Coastal Plain
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [(no records) ]
Lucindale (NCP03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   [(no records) ]
Tintinara (NCP04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   [(no records) ]
Kangaroo Island (KAN01)Kanmantoo
 Data Deficient   [(no records) could possibly be on KI, not all collections have been databased]
Fleurieu (KAN02) 
 Near Threatened
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Least Concern
Broughton (FLB02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA a)   (Definite Decline)   [Tothills, Spring Gully, Sevenhill.]
Southern Flinders (FLB04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA a)   (Definite Decline)   [Restricted range.]
Lowan Mallee (MDD04)Murray Darling Depression
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [no records, not yet databased]
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 Thelymitra]
Name derivation:
Thelymitra from Greek 'thelys' meaning a bishop and 'mitra' meaning a headwear, hat, hence a bishop’s mitre, referring to the sometimes plumed or decorated wings of the column, which is usually produced behind and over the anther in a hood-like projection. Albiflora from the Latin 'alba' meaning white or pale and 'floris' meaning flower, referring to the species having usually white flowers.
Endemic to South Australia and found in the higher rainfall areas of the southern Flinders Ranges, Mount Lofty Ranges and the upper South-east, growing in woodland, open forest, scrubland and heathland on well-drained gravely loam soils.
Native. Common in South Australia.
Plant description:
Erect terrestrial orchid with linear to linear-lanceolate leaves to 30 cm long and 11 mm wide, erect fleshy, green with a purplish base. Flower spike straight, usually pale green to 50 cm high with white or pale blue flowers, that open tardily on warm to hot days. 1-10  Flowering between late September to early November.
Fruit type:
Brown papery obovoid capsule to 18 mm long and 6.5 mm wide, ribbed.
Seed collecting:
Collect fat capsules as they start to dry and turn brown. Pods will split and release the seeds quickly and will require monitoring. To increase the chances of collecting mature pods, it is recommended that a small breathable bag (ie. Organza bags) be used to enclose the developing capsules.
Seed cleaning:
Place the capsules in a container that will hold fine seeds and leave to dry for a few weeks or until the capsule split. Then carefully hold the capsule and tap it gently to release the seeds. 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 or in liquid nitrogen.