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Desmodium acanthocladum F.Muell.
Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Faboideae
Common name: Thorny Pea

Desmodium acanthocladum F.Muell. APNI*

Description: Shrub to c. 1 m high; branches rigid, glabrous, spinose.

Leaves 3-foliolate; leaflets oblanceolate to oblong, 0.3–2.5 cm long, 1–6 mm wide, terminal leaflet conspicuously longer than laterals, apex obtuse, glabrous; petiole 2–4 mm long; stipules c. 1 mm long.

Flowering branches reduced to axillary, leafless spines with 1 or 2 pairs or clusters of flowers towards the end; pedicels c. 1 mm long. Flowers c. 8 mm long, pink to purple.

Pod c. 50 mm long; articles 1–5, each 10–12 mm long.


Flower
Photo A.E. Orme

Fruit
Photo A.E. Orme

Flowering: summer.

Distribution and occurrence: Grows mainly along rivers in Lismore-Grafton district, not common.
NSW subdivisions: NC

Threatened species: NSW TSCA: Vulnerable ROTAP: 2VC-
AVH map***

Uraria lagopodioides (NC) keys out with Desmodium. See page 632 for key to separate the genera and a description of the genus and species. It can be distinguished by the dense spike-like racemes and the fruit.

Text by C. Gardner & T. A. James
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 2 (1991)


APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.
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