Seeds of South Australia
Thryptomene ericaea (Myrtaceae)
Mat Heath-myrtle
List of species for Thryptomene
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Seed collecting:
November to February
Herbarium regions:
Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island
NRM regions:
Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island
IBRA regions
Kangaroo Island (KAN01)Kanmantoo
 Least Concern   [widespread]
Eyre Hills (EYB03)Eyre Yorke Block
 Critically Endangered   (IUCN: CR D)   [One old record in Pt Linc, could be extinct]
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 Thryptomene]
Name derivation:
Thryptomene from Greek meaning broken, diminished or made small; probably refers to the small flowers or the lowly stature of most of the species. Ericaea from the Greek 'ereike' meaning heath; possibly referring to it being heath-like.
Endemic to South Australia and found mainly on Kangaroo Island, with a few old records from the southern Eyre Peninsula, growing on well-drained soils over laterite or limestone in mallee shrubland.
Native. Common in South Australia.
Plant description:
Low bushy shrub to 1.2 m high and usually wider. Leaves narrowly elliptical-acute, to 6 mm long and 1 mm wide, margins entire. Inflorescence in axils below summit of branchlets with white flowers sometime with pink tinged. Flowering between September and December.
Fruit type:
Brown tubular fruit to 4 mm long and 1.5 mm wide, with deep lateral striation and bearing persistent sepals.
Seed type:
A small ovoid seed sits in the fat section of the fruit.
Embryo type:
Spatulate fully developed.
Seed collecting:
Collect heads by hand when they are brown and slightly fat at the base. Break off whole spike as not all heads will have viable fruit/seed.
Seed cleaning:
Place the heads in a tray and leave to dry for a week. Then gently rub the heads to dislodge the seeds. Use a sieve to separate any 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.