Common name: Lesser Sand-spurry
Spergularia diandra (Guss.) Heldr. APNI*
Description: Annual with a slender taproot, Branches erect to decumbent from base.
Leaves with a mucro and shortly caudate, often fleshy, 10–35 mm long and 0.5–1.0 mm wide, usually glabrous. Stipules usually acute, frequently unevenly forked, connate for about 1/3 of their length.
Inflorescence few- to many- flowered, lax, with moderately to dense glandular hairs, rarely almost glabrous. Pedicels about twice the length of sepals. Sepals 1.5–2 mm long,, 2.5–3 mm in fruit, basal spots absent. Petals white or pale to bright pink, the tips darker, 1.6–2.5 mm long. Stamens 2 or 3.
Capsule sub-globose 2.5–3 mm long, as long as the sepals; seeds oblique pyriform to tear-drop shaped, c. 0.5 mm long, dark-brown, grey-brown or blackish, metalic iridescent, ± smooth to colliculate or papillate, wingless.
Distribution and occurrence: Native of Mediterranean Europe, common in southern Australia.
Weed found in salt flats and clay pans among semi-arid chenopod shrublands, floodplain woodlands and mallee communities.
NSW subdivisions: *CC, *CWS, *NWP, *SWP, *NFWP, *SFWP
Other Australian states: *Vic. *S.A. *W.A.
Text by Louisa Murray
Taxon concept: Adams, L.G, West, J.G. & Cowley, K.J. (2009) Revision of Spergularia (Caryophyllaceae) in Australia. Australian Systematic Botany 21(4) 251-270.
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.