Seeds of South Australia
Austrostipa scabra ssp. scabra (Gramineae)
Rough Spear-grass
List of species for Austrostipa
Click on an image to enlarge it
Seed collecting:
January to December
Herbarium regions:
North Western, Lake Eyre, Nullarbor, Gairdner-Torrens, Flinders Ranges, Eastern, Eyre Peninsula, Northern Lofty, Murray, Yorke Peninsula, Southern Lofty, South Eastern
NRM regions:
Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges, Alinytjara Wilurara, Eyre Peninsula, Northern and Yorke, South Australian Arid Lands, South Australian Murray-Darling Basin, South East
IBRA regions
SUMMARY
Fleurieu (KAN02)Kanmantoo
 Near Threatened   [difficult to ID from A falcata; prob undercollected]
Mount Lofty Ranges (FLB01)Flinders Lofty Block
 Near Threatened   [difficult to ID from A falcata]
Broughton (FLB02) 
 Least Concern
Olary Spur (FLB03) 
 Least Concern
Southern Flinders (FLB04) 
 Least Concern
Northern Flinders (FLB05) 
 Near Threatened
Central Flinders (FLB06) 
 Near Threatened
St Vincent (EYB02)Eyre Yorke Block
 Least Concern
Eyre Hills (EYB03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Talia (EYB04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Eyre Mallee (EYB05) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
South Olary Plain (MDD01)Murray Darling Depression
 Least Concern
Myall Plains (GAW01)Gawler
 Least Concern
Gawler Volcanics (GAW02) 
 Least Concern
Gawler Lakes (GAW03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Arcoona Plateau (GAW04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Kingoonya (GAW05) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Roxby (GAW07) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Commonwealth Hill (GAW08) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Maralinga (GVD03)Great Victoria Desert
 Least Concern
Kintore (GVD04) 
 Least Concern
Yellabinna (GVD06) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Nullarbor Plain (NUL02)Nullarbor
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Bimbowrie (BHC05)Broken Hill Complex
 Least Concern
Breakaways (STP01)Stony Plains
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Oodnadatta (STP02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Murnpeowie (STP03) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Mann-Musgrave Block (CER01)Central Ranges
 Least Concern
Watarru (CER02) 
 Least Concern
Everard Block (CER03) 
 Least Concern
Tieyon (FIN03)Finke
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(ii))
IBRA regions
DISPLAY ALL
Fleurieu (KAN02)KanmantooNear Threatened
  [difficult to ID from A falcata; prob undercollected]
6 of 6 subregionsFlinders Lofty BlockLeast Concern
, Near Threatened
4 of 5 subregionsEyre Yorke BlockLeast Concern
, Rare
South Olary Plain (MDD01)Murray Darling DepressionLeast Concern
7 of 8 subregionsGawlerLeast Concern
, Rare
3 of 4 subregionsGreat Victoria DesertLeast Concern
, Rare
Nullarbor Plain (NUL02)NullarborRare
  (IUCN: RA d(ii))
Bimbowrie (BHC05)Broken Hill ComplexLeast Concern
3 of 7 subregionsStony PlainsRare
3 of 3 subregionsCentral RangesLeast Concern
Tieyon (FIN03)FinkeRare
  (IUCN: RA d(ii))
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. Scabra from the Latin 'scaber' meaning rough to the touch, scurfy, referring to its short stiff hairs or minute projections which are rough to the touch.
Distribution:
Found across South Australia, except in the north-eastern part, growing in a wide range of habitats and soil types. Also found in all states.
Status:
Native. Common in South Australia. Rare in Tasmania. Common in the other states.
Plant description:
Tufted perennial grass to 1 m high, with unbranched erect culms and glabrous nodes. Leaves smooth, scabrous or shortly pubescent with blade rolled to 20 cm long and 0.5 mm wide; lobe (ligule) at base of upper leaf blade to 4 mm; mouth of sheath (auricle) glabrous. Inflorescence a narrow dense panicle to 30 cm long, with spikelets ly appressed to stem; glumes to 15 mm long, usually purplish initially, soon becoming straw-coloured. This subspecies differs from the other subspecies found in South Australia, A. scabra ssp. falcata which has mouth of sheath hairy ( auricles); ligule to 1 mm long; leaf-blades less than 15 cm long; inflorescence sparse open or spreading, with spikelets somewhat spreading from stems. Flowers throughout the year depending on rain.

Key to this species: awn falcate (curved bristle at right angle to the column); lemma narrow and needle-like, mouth of sheath glabrous; ligule < 4 mm; leaves long >15 cm; planicle narrow appressed

  Pale- brown linear-elliptic lemma to 6.5 mm long, with a smooth surface and covered in white hairs; callus to 2 mm long; awn falcate to 70 mm long, with column scabrous or pubescent with banded black and yellow veins.
Seed type:
Yellow-brown narrow- ellipsoid grain to 3 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 straw colour. 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 variable, depending on time of seed collections and seasonal conditions.