Seeds of South Australia
Austrostipa flavescens (Gramineae)
Coast Spear-grass
List of species for Austrostipa
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Seed collecting:
November to February
Herbarium regions:
Flinders Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Yorke Peninsula, Southern Lofty, Kangaroo Island, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Eyre Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
IBRA regions
SUMMARY
Mount Gambier (SVP02)Southern Volcanic Plain
 Least Concern
Bridgewater (NCP01)Naracoorte Coastal Plain
 Least Concern
Glenelg Plain (NCP02) 
 Least Concern
Lucindale (NCP03) 
 Least Concern
Tintinara (NCP04) 
 Least Concern
Kangaroo Island (KAN01)Kanmantoo
 Least Concern
Fleurieu (KAN02) 
 Least Concern
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Least Concern
Broughton (FLB02) 
 Least Concern
Southern Flinders (FLB04) 
 Least Concern
Northern Flinders (FLB05) 
 Vulnerable   (IUCN: VU D2)   [highly localised ; limited habitat; edge of range]
Southern Yorke (EYB01)Eyre Yorke Block
 Least Concern
St Vincent (EYB02) 
 Least Concern
Eyre Hills (EYB03) 
 Least Concern
Talia (EYB04) 
 Least Concern
Eyre Mallee (EYB05) 
 Least Concern
Murray Mallee (MDD02)Murray Darling Depression
 Least Concern
Murray Lakes and Coorong (MDD03) 
 Least Concern
Lowan Mallee (MDD04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [unusual record; not suitable habitat]
Wimmera (MDD05) 
 Least Concern
Myall Plains (GAW01)Gawler
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [fragmented habitat]
Gawler Volcanics (GAW02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))   (Probable Decline)   [fragmented habitat]
IBRA regions
DISPLAY ALL
Mount Gambier (SVP02)Southern Volcanic PlainLeast Concern
4 of 4 subregionsNaracoorte Coastal PlainLeast Concern
2 of 2 subregionsKanmantooLeast Concern
4 of 6 subregionsFlinders Lofty BlockLeast Concern
, Vulnerable
5 of 5 subregionsEyre Yorke BlockLeast Concern
4 of 6 subregionsMurray Darling DepressionLeast Concern
, Rare
2 of 8 subregionsGawlerRare
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 Austrostipa]
Name derivation:
Austrostipa from the Latin 'auster' meaning south and the genus Stipa; referring to the genus being allied to Stipa but restricted to Australia. Flavescens from the Latin 'flavus' meaning yellow and '-escens' meaning in the process of becoming; referring to its spikelets being yellowish.
Distribution:
Found in the southern part of South Australia, growing in a wide range of habitats on sandy to loamy soils. Also found in Western Australia, New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania.
Status:
Native. Common in South Australia. Common in the other states.
Plant description:
Tufted perennial grass to 1.2 m high with short rhizome, erect culms and pubescent to almost glabrous nodes. Leaves glabrous to densely pubescent with blade flat to inrolled to 700 mm long and 7 mm wide when flattened. Inflorescence a dense, slender panicle to 30 cm long with glumes to 15 mm long, equal or the lower longer by up to 3 mm than upper. Flowering between September and January.

Key to this species: awn twice bent with coma, panicle contracted with short open branches, glumes narrow straight, callus long fine straight, culm stout (1-4 mm).

Fruit type:
Dark brown to black lemma to 9 mm long with a granular surface texture covered with semi-appressed golden hairs, coma obscure with hairs less than 1.5 mm, callus long straight to 3 mm long, awn twice bent to 70 mm long, column shortly pubescent, palea slightly shorter than lemma with silky-hair along the centre line.
Seed type:
Yellow-brown narrow ovoid grain to 5 mm long within the lemma.
Embryo type:
Lateral.
Seed collecting:
Use your hands to gently strip the seeds (lemma) off the mature fruiting spike, those that are turning golden. Mature seeds will come off easily compare to the immature seeds that remain on the spike. Alternatively, you can break off the whole fruit spike to allow some of the seeds to mature further.
Seed cleaning:
Place the seeds/spike in a tray and leave to dry for two weeks. No further cleaning is required if only seed collected. If seed spikes collected, use hand to strip off the mature 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.
Seed viability:
Viability of grass seeds could be very viable, depending on time of seed collections and seasonal conditions.