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Hovea ramulosa A.Cunn. ex Lindl.
Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Faboideae
Hovea ramulosa A.Cunn. ex Lindl. APNI*

Description: Shrub up to 2.2 m tall, often less than 1 m tall, slender-stemmed. Indumentum of branchlets, petiole, stipules, pedicel, abaxial surfaces of bract and bracteoles and external surface of calyx dense, grey-brown to grey or grey-black, hairs long, spreading extending 0.8–1 mm from understorey, hairs coiled at base.

Leaves: petiole 2–2.5 mm long; lamina narrow-linear, linear, 3.5–9 cm long, 2.2–5 mm wide (juvenile leaves lorate to very narrow-elliptic or oblanceolate, to 8 mm wide), strongly arched each side of a moderately recessed midrib, base obtuse, margins revolute, apex obtuse to subacute, mucro with long hairs; upper surface green, dull, glabrous, venation strongly raised with short projections at vein junctions; lower surface largely obscured by a tan, orange or dark orange-brown indumentum, hairs curled, these hairs in turn partly obscured by long grey-white hairs mostly spreading laterally from midrib and leaf margins, midrib indumentum sparse to moderately dense, dark brown, glabrescent. Stipules lanceolate to subulate, 2–4 mm long, sometimes recurved, fragile.

Inflorescences sessile, mostly 2-flowered. Flowers with bract inserted 0.7–1 mm distal to base of pedicel, narrow-ovate to lanceolate, 1.5–2.3 mm long; bracteoles inserted at base of calyx, lanceolate, 1.5–3 mm long, sometimes recurved; calyx 4.5–5.5 mm long; tube 2–2.8 mm long; upper lip 2.5–3.2 mm wide across base, apex of lobes shallowly rounded; lower lip 4.5 mm wide across base, lateral lobes 1.8–2 mm long, the lower lobe 2.2–2.5 mm long; standard c. 8 mm long, 10–12 mm wide, claw 2–2.5 mm long, limb mauve, flare comprising a hemispherical sometimes slightly bilobed yellow, 1.5–2 mm wide, bordered by a zone of deep mauve; wing 7–8 mm long, 3.5–4 mm wide, claw c. 2 mm long; keel 4.5–4.7 mm long, 2–2.2 mm wide, claw c. 2 mm long.

Pod obliquely orbicular in profile, c. 10 mm long, c. 10 mm deep, sessile, external surface slightly obscured by a pale indumentum, hairs long. Seeds ellipsoid, 5 mm long, 3.2 mm wide, mottled red/brown, aril ± oblong, 4.8 mm long, 1.2 mm wide, extending c. 70–80% of the curved length of seed.

Photo J. & P. Edwards

Other photo
Photo J. & P. Edwards


Flowering: Flowers in July–August. Fruit matures in October-November.

Distribution and occurrence: Occurs in north-eastern NSW in the Copmanhurst area near Grafton and in far-south-eastern Queensland, from Helidon east to Beenleigh.

Occurs in sandy soils derived from sandstone in woodland.
NSW subdivisions: NC
Other Australian states: Qld
AVH map***

Hovea ramulosa has the same type of indumentum as H. pannosa, H. speciosa and H. pedunculata but is distinguishable by its smaller stature and by leaves with a higher leaf length/width ratio and more strongly raised veins.

Text by Louisa Murray
Taxon concept: I.R. Thompson (2001) Eastern Australian Hovea (Brongniartieae-Fabaceae). Australian Systematic Botany, Vol 14, pp 89-90.

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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