Cassinia monticola Orchard APNI*
Description: Low spreading shrub 0.3–2.0 m high; young stems reddish-purple with a sparse to moderate indumentum of white cottony crisped hairs ± emergent stalked glandular hairs.
Leaves narrow-linear to narrow-lanceolate, 10–40 mm long, 1–4 mm wide, sessile, not decurrent, margins revolute, tip acute and reflexed, not mucronate; upper surface dark glossy green or dull grey/blue-green, ± viscid, usually with dense subsessile glandular hairs and sparse cottony hairs when young, becoming scabrous with age; lower surface densely white tomentose with glabrous green midrib.
Inflorescence a moderately large, dense, round-topped corymb with several hundred heads, each 4–6 mm long. Involucral bracts papery, 16–20, imbricate in 4 whorls, outer bracts brownish-hyaline, inner bracts clear-hyaline with opaque white tips. Florets 4–6 per head, creamy-white.
Achenes white, 1.2 -1.5 mm long, longitudinally ribbed or wrinkled, or laterally compressed. Pappus of 23–26 persistent bristles.
Flowering: February – March.
Distribution and occurrence: Occurs in alpine and subalpine herbfield, grassland and shrubland and margins of Snow Gum woodland above 1200m. Confined to a small area from Thredbo to Kiandra and Happy Jacks Plain in the Snowy Mountains.
NSW subdivisions: ST
Other Australian states: Vic.
Similar to C. ochracea which grows at slightly lower altitudes within Snow Gum woodland but has lighter coloured achenes and flatter leaves than that species. C. monticola appears to prefer more open, wetter habitats such as river floodplains, boggy hollows and frost hollows amongst tussock grasses.
Text by K. Ismay
Taxon concept: A. E . Orchard 2004
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
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