Description: Annuals or evergreen perennials, rhizomatous.
Leaves basal and cauline, equitant, linear.
Inflorescence cymose, 2–6-flowered; flowers pedicellate, emerging successively from paired leaf-like spathe bracts. Flowers actinomorphic. Perianth forming a cup around stamens and style, spreading above; lobes almost free, equal in length, outer lobes often slightly broader than inner ones. Stamens included; filaments usually fused. Ovary globose. Style deeply 3-fid, branches entire, filiform.
Capsule globose to trigonous; pedicel long, filiform; seeds numerous, pitted.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 140 species, Americas. Australia: 2 species (naturalised), N.S.W., Qld, Vic, WA
Flowers of both of the naturalised species have oil-producing glandular trichomes ('nuptial trichomes') on the staminal filament column and the adaxial faces of the tepals. This genus is currently under revision.
Text by T. A. James & E. A. Brown (1993); edited KL Wilson (Jan 2015)
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Annual or perennial, 20–60 cm high; flowers with tepals spreading widely to reflexed, slightly convex near base, 10–20 mm diam., cream to white with purple or blue centre; capsule 2–8 mm diam.||Sisyrinchium micranthum|
|Annual, 3–15 cm high; flowers with tepals spreading at apex, more or less globose at base, 5–7 mm diam., yellow with purple-brown markings or blue to mauve with a yellowish throat; capsule 2–4 mm diam.||Sisyrinchium rosulatum|