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Herbarium specimen. Copyright DERM

Cyathula prostrata

Family

Amaranthaceae

Botanical Name

Cyathula prostrata (L.) Blume

Blume, C.L. von (1827) Bijdragen tot de Flora van Nederlandsch Indie 14: 549. Type: ?.

Synonyms

Achyranthes prostrata L., Species Plantarum Edn. 2, 1: 296(1762), Type: Habitat in India.

Common name

Purple Princess

Stem

Herbs 30-60 cm tall with prostrate or erect stems, tinged red, obtusely quadrangular, branched and inflated at nodes.

Leaves

Petioles 5-15 mm long. Leaf blades 30-70 x 13-35 mm, underside clothed in small hairs which are visible with a lens. Young leaves covered in dense long hairs.

Flowers

Flowers subtended by and enclosed in two bracts. Groups of hooked hairs attached between the basal bracts and the tepals. Tepals about 2 x 1 mm, margins fringed with long hairs. Stamens 5, attached to a cup-shaped disk surrounding the ovary. Anthers wider than long. Ovary about 1 mm diam. Ovule basal, attached by a long stalk. Stigma terminal, capitate.

Fruit

Fruits 3-3.5 mm diam. (including the persistent tepals and hooks), falling with the persistent tepals and surrounded by tree-like structures complete with hooks. Seeds smooth, about 2 mm diam. Embryo curved, about 2.5 mm long.

Seedlings

Cotyledons coiled, wider than the radicle.

Distribution and Ecology

Distributed in Northeastern Queensland, Cape York Peninsula and the northern part of the Northern Territory. Occurs in the understory of deciduous to evergreen vine thickets, vine forest, closed forest and Monsoonal thicket, growing mostly on loamy and sandy soils.

CYP

X

NEQ

X

Herb (herbaceous or woody, under 1 m tall)

X

RFK Code

4017