Common name: Sicklethorn, Large Forest Asparagus
Asparagus falcatus L. APNI*
Description: Robust climber with woody perennial stems to 5(-7?) m long, with stout hooked spines to 3 cm long; with a central crown, roots fibrous to tuberous.
Cladodes linear, mostly somewhat falcate (sickle-shaped), 30–90 mm long, 3–7 mm wide.
Flowers small, white, fragrant.
Berry more or less globose, reddish.
Distribution and occurrence: Naturalised near Nambucca (North Coast region) and in a reserve at Avoca Beach (Central Coast). Also naturalised in SE Qld. Native to eastern and southern Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, India and Sri Lanka; cultivated and naturalised widely elsewhere.
In weedy rainforest areas; in SE Qld becoming common in gallery forest along streams.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC
Other Australian states: *Qld
Distinctive because of its very elongated flat cladodes (to 9 cm long and 7 mm wide). Potentially a major weed with its robust climbing habit, with big thorns on the woody stems, and its big root-crown.
Text by KL Wilson (Mar 2013); edited KL Wilson (Jan 2014; Oct 2014)
Taxon concept: Obermeyer & Immelman, Flora Southern Africa vol 5(3) (1992); online at http://posa.sanbi.org/searchspp.php
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.