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Cassinia uncata A.Cunn.
Family Asteraceae
Common name: Sticky Cassinia

Cassinia uncata A.Cunn. APNI*

Description: Erect shrub 1–2 m high, 1 m in diameter, with faint resinous smell; young twigs olive brown with a dense indumentum of white woolly hairs with ocassional emergent multiseriate hairs sometimes gland tipped.

Leaves alternate, spreading, not decurrent, sessile, narrow-linear to terete, 6–12 mm long, sometimes longer, 0.5–1 mm wide; upper surface mid-green, rugose, glabrous and somewhat viscid above, lower surface obsured with relovute margins to midrib, covered with dense woolly hairs and underlying sub-sessile globular glandular hairs.

Inflorescence a sub-conical dense head of 25–100 flower heads arranged more or less alternatively along the branched axes, off-white to cream from a distance. Heads 3.0–3.5 mm long, involucral bracts white tipped and green below, 18–20, all papery, arranged spirally in 4–6 rows, or sometimes vertically ranked, outermost tiny and orbicular, inner narrow-oblong to narrow-ovate.

Achene olive-brown to blackish, spindle-shaped, 0.6–1.0 mm long; pappus of c. 18 flattened bristles in a ring.


Flowering: Flowers in spring.

Distribution and occurrence: Confined to the North Western Slopes, Central Western Slopes, North Western Plains and South Western Plains of NSW with an outlier in the Murray district of South Australia. Previous records from Victoria, Queensland and other districts of NSW and SA are erroneous, and are now included under other species.

Found in dry open woodland dominated by mallee Eucalyptus, Casuarinaceae, Callitris, and shrubby Acacia spp., often on sandy loam soils with flat or undulating toppgraphy. Most populations are small and localised, and seed set seems to be poor.
NSW subdivisions: NWS, CWS, NWP, SWP
Other Australian states: S.A.
AVH map***

Cassinia uncata A. Cunn. was described from over mature incomplete material, and its identity has been confusing. The name has been misapplied to a least 27 different species of Cassinia and one of Haeckeria by many authors, thus appearing a widespread and common species. C. uncata is known to be rare and possibly vunerable, and confined to inland NSW and SA.

Text by Louisa Murray
Taxon concept: Orchard, A.E. ((2007) The identity of Cassinia uncata A.Cunn. (Asteraceae: Gnaphalieae). Telopea 11(4) 427-436.

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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