Seeds of South Australia
Calotis kempei (Compositae)
Kemp's Burr-daisy
List of species for Calotis
Click on an image to enlarge it
Seed collecting:
October to January
Herbarium regions:
North Western, Lake Eyre
NRM regions:
Alinytjara Wilurara, South Australian Arid Lands
IBRA regions
Kintore (GVD04)Great Victoria Desert
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Breakaways (STP01)Stony Plains
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Oodnadatta (STP02) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Macumba (STP05) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Witjira (STP06) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Mann-Musgrave Block (CER01)Central Ranges
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Tieyon (FIN03)Finke
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
Pedirka (FIN04) 
 Rare   (IUCN: RA d(i,ii))   [highly resistent to grazing]
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 Calotis]
Name derivation:
Calotis from the Greek 'kalos' meaning beautiful and 'otos' meaning ear, after the first species named in the genus Calotis cuneifolia which has an ear-shaped pappus. Kempei named after Pastor Hermann F.A. Kempe (1844-1928), a German miner, joiner, pioneer missionary Lutheran parish pastor and plant collector.
Found in the north and north-west part of South Australia, growing on dunes, creek banks and disturbed ground. Also found in the Northern Territory.
Native. Uncommon in South Australia. Common in Northern Territory.
Plant description:
Perennial herb or undershrub to 50 cm high with erect, branched, glabrous and rigid stems, becoming woody at the base. Leaves sessile, oblanceolate to obovate to 5 cm long and 18 mm wide; regularly serrate, the lower ones narrowed at the base, the upper ones subamplexicaul, glabrous, often minutely glandular. Flower-head in loose terminal panicles of 3-7 flowers, ray florets yellow. Flowering between August and October.
Fruit type:
Brown round fruit-head.
Seed type:
Brown cone-shaped seed to 3 mm long, surface with small barb, one curved spine at the swollen end.
Embryo type:
Spatulate fully developed
Seed collecting:
Collect mature seed heads that are dried and turning brown by picking off the heads and placing them in a paper bag. Be careful as the heads are spiny.
Seed cleaning:
Leave the heads in the paper bag to dry for at least a week. No further cleaning required if only the heads are collected. If other material were collected, use a sieve to separate the unwanted material. Whole heads can be stored with a desiccant such as dried silica beads or dry rice, in an air tight container in a cool and dry place.
Seed viability:
From one collection, the seed viability was average, at 55%.
Seed germination:
Seeds are non-dormant, viable seed should germinate readily.
Seeds stored:
LocationNo. of seeds
(weight grams)
of plants
Collection number
Collection location
% ViabilityStorage
7200 (28 g)
7200 (28 g)
North Western
Location: BGA — the seeds are stored at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, MSB — the seeds are stored at the Millennium Seed Bank, Kew, England.
Number of plants: This is the number of plants from which the seeds were collected.
Collection location: The Herbarium of South Australia's region name.
% Viability: Percentage of filled healthy seeds determined by a cut test or x-ray.