Common name: Red Valerian, Kiss-me-quick, Jupiter's Beard
Centranthus ruber (L.) DC. APNI*
Description: Perennial herb to 70 cm high, glabrous.Younger leaves glaucous. Lower stem leaves mainly oblanceolate or narrow-elliptic, 3.5–12 cm long, 1–5 cm wide, apex acute, margins usually entire; leaves becoming ovate-acuminate with toothed margins below the inflorescence; petiolate to sessile and stem-clasping.
Terminal thyrses often divided into several cymose part-inflorescences with numerous sessile flowers; bracts linear. Calyx toothed, teeth incurved in flower, spreading and feather-like in fruit. Corolla pink to rose-red, rarely white; tube slender, 7–11 mm long, basal spur 4–8 mm long; lobes 2–3 mm long.
Fruit oblong-ovoid, compressed; feathery pappus on apical circular ridge.
Flowering: mainly August–December
Distribution and occurrence: Cultivated as an ornamental, sometimes naturalized. Native of Eur. & W Asia.
NSW subdivisions: *CC, *CT, *ST, *NWS, *LHI
Other Australian states: *Qld *Vic. *Tas. *W.A. *S.A. *N.T.
Text by L. Retter
Taxon concept: P.S. Green (1994)
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.