Western australian wildlife management program no. 28 Declared Rare and Poorly Known Flora in the Moora District



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Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Unknown, but thought to be low.



Management Requirements

-  Continue close liaison with landowners/managers and local authorities.

-  Monitor populations regularly to determine their conservation status.

-  Protect from fire, where possible, during vegetative/flowering phase of the plants (May-December).

-  Investigate change of vesting of the land on which populations 4-9 occur to enhance conservation

status.


-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at all populations.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.

Research Requirements

-  Further surveys should be carried out in areas of suitable habitat, particularly in the Eneabba area.

-  Conduct research on pollination biology and population ecology.

References

Hoffman and Brown (1992).



111

Ptychosema pusillum Benth.

FABACEAE


Dwarf Pea

Ptychosema pusillum was first collected by James Drummond in the early 1800s, with further collections

made in 1902 and 1913.  It was not collected again until 1971 and despite several surveys of the locality

from which it had been collected near Gingin, the population was not refound until 1986.  The discovery of

a population in the Moora District in 1992 extended the range of this rare species ca. 50 km further north.

It is an erect, herb-like plant to 10 cm tall.  The leaves are pinnate, with 5-11, narrow, obovate leaflets, 2-10

mm long and 1-2 mm wide.  The flowers are borne singly on long leafless stalks to ca. 6 cm long, and are

typical pea flowers.  The large standard petal is orange striped with deep red on the upper side, and with a

yellow  “eye” at the base.  The back of this petal is dark brown with yellow stripes.  The other petals are

dark red.  The fruit is a dry, flat pod, containing a few seeds.  The flower of this species resembles that of

Lambs Poison, 



Isotropis cuneifolia, but the plant differs in its pinnate leaves.

Flowering Period:  August-November

Distribution and Habitat in the Moora District

This species was known only from one population of ca. 70 plants from north-east of Gingin in the Swan

Region (population 1) until 1992 when a large population was found in the south of the Moora District ca.

50 km further north.  It has also been collected from the Badgingarra area, which is some 50 km further

north, but no further details of the locality have been recorded. 

The population within the Moora District grows in open low woodland of



 Banksia attenuata, B. menziesii

and 


Eucalyptus todtiana over scrub with Adenanthos cygnorum, Eremaea pauciflora, Hibbertia

hypericoides and Eriostemon spicatus, on the top and upper slopes of a high sand ridge.  The plants are

found in open areas on grey sand.  The southern population grows in banksia-eucalyptus woodland

amongst low scrub and herbs, adjacent to a paperbark swamp.

Conservation Status

Current:  Declared Rare Flora



Populations Known in the Moora District

Population

Shire 

Land Status



Last Survey

No. of Plants

Condition

2.  SE of Cataby

D

Road Reserve, Private



20.8.1993

10000+


Healthy

3.* Near Badgingarra

-

-

-



-

-

Response to Disturbance

Unknown.  Plants at population 2 were growing in undisturbed woodland and were not present on a

firebreak.



Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Presumed susceptible



112

Management Requirements

-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at the population.

-  Maintain liaison with the landowner and Shire on whose land population 2 occurs, and with companies

with mining tenements covering the land on which the population occurs.

-  Efforts should be made to acquire the area on which population 2 occurs as a nature reserve, particularly

as other rare and poorly known taxa occur there.

-  Monitor population regularly.

-  Protect from frequent fire, where possible, until the fire response is known.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.



Research Requirements 

-  Further survey is required during the flowering season of this inconspicuous species, particularly in

suitable habitat in conservation reserves between Gingin and Badgingarra, and to the north-east of

Badgingarra.

-  Conduct research on the population biology and fire response of the species.

References

Bentham (1864), Kelly 



et al. (1990), Lee (1973), Millar (1982), Rye and Hopper (1981).

Illustration by L. Braganca.



113

Restio chaunocoleus F.Muell.

RESTIONACEAE

(now 

Chordifex)

Heath Rush

This species was known only from the type collection made by James Drummond in the middle of last

century, from which it was described by Mueller in 1873.  It was presumed extinct until two populations

were found in 1990.  One of these was found near Toodyay in the Swan Region, the other in the Moora

District.  It is an erect, tufted, perennial plant to 80 cm in height.  The rhizome is thick, creeping and

covered with whitish wool.  The stems are hairless, to 0.6 m or more in height, with narrow sheathing

scales which are loose above the middle and produced to a point.  The branchlets are absent or reduced to

less than 5 cm in length.  There are numerous spikelets, in clusters of 3-5 in the uppermost nodes.  Male

and female spikelets are on separate plants and are narrow.  The male spikelets are up to ca. 4 mm long,

numerous in a terminal interrupted spike.  The female spikelets are fewer, to ca. 8 mm long, containing 2 or

3 flowers.



Flowering Period:  August-September

Distribution and Habitat in the Moora District

This species is known from one population of 500+ plants on road verge and private land in the Swan

Region near Toodyay and from two other populations of ca. 11,000 plants in total near Badgingarra which

is ca. 160 km to the north-west in the Moora District.  It occurs in siliceous sands in the southern

population.  Near Badgingarra it grows in deep sand, in low, moist drainage lines between lateritic hills, in

shrubland with 



Banksia attenuata, B. menziesii, Adenanthos cygnorum, Eucalyptus todtiana and

Macrozamia riedlei.

Conservation Status

Current:  Declared Rare Flora



Populations Known in the Moora District

Population

Shire 

Land Status



Last Survey

No. of Plants

Condition

2.  W of Badgingarra

D

National Park,



Shire Road Reserve 

30.5.1994

1000+

Healthy


3.  W of Badgingarra

D

National Park,



Shire Road Reserve 

30.5.1994

10000+

Healthy


Response to Disturbance

The plants are seeder species and are therefore susceptible to elimination by frequent fire.



Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Unknown


114

Management Requirements

-  Maintain liaison with the Dandaragan Shire on whose land the populations partly occur.

-  Monitor populations regularly.

-  Protect from fire, where possible.

-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at all populations.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.

Research Requirements

-  Further survey is required particularly in suitable habitat in the Badgingarra National Park and to the

south of that area.

References

Bentham (1878), K. Meney (personal communication), Mueller (1873), Patrick (1985).



115

Spirogardnera rubescens Stauffer

SANTALACEAE

Spiral Bush

This leafless, semi-parasitic shrub is the only species in the genus, and was named in honour of Charles

Gardner, who showed the plant to Hans Stauffer when he visited Western Australia in 1963.  He recognised

it as a new genus and subsequently named it.



Spirogardnera rubescens is an erect, open plant to 1.6 m tall, with succulent, light green flowering

branches which twist in a spiral shape.  There are reddish bracts on these stalks up to 0.4 cm long and the

flowers are arranged in sessile clusters each with four flowers and up to ca. 20 clusters along each stalk.

The flowers are ca. 0.2 cm long, with five perianth lobes, white on the outside and yellow-green with fine

hairs on the inside.  There are five stamens opposite the petals.  The fruit is stalkless and succulent,

surrounded by the persistent perianth segments, which become dark red with age.



Flowering Period:  August-November

Distribution and Habitat in the Moora District

S. rubescens is known from two disjunct areas ca. 100 km apart.  It was collected originally from east of

Wannamal in 1962, but was not refound there until 1988.  It is known from this area of the Swan Region

from three populations.  In the Moora District the species is known from four populations in an area over

12 km, to the north of Badgingarra.  It has also been recorded from 20 km further south but this population

was not refound during the survey.  The area in which it occurred has since been burnt and possibly the

population has been destroyed.

In the Moora District this species grows in brown loam and laterite on hill slopes or in grey loam over

yellow clay loam in tall heath and open mallee scrub with 



Eucalyptus eudesmioides and E. wandoo.  It also

grows in clayey sand over laterite in drainage lines and low areas.  In the Wannamal area it grows in brown

loam and lateritic gravel or in granitic soil in open low woodland with

 E. wandoo and Santalum

acuminatum.

Conservation Status

Current:  Declared Rare Flora



Populations Known in the Moora District

Population

Shire 

Land Status



Last Survey

No. of Plants

Condition

2a. Tootbardie Road

Co

Shire Road



Reserve 

14.8.1991

5 (250 est. in

1987)


Undisturbed

2b. Alexander Morrison Co

National Park

14.8.1991

7

Undisturbed, 9 plants



in 1987, 2 in firebreak

? now destroyed

4.

Marchagee-Coomallo



Road

D

Shire Road



Reserve 

14.8.1991

8 (30+ plants

1986)


Undisturbed, some

plants on road shoulder

5.

Marchagee-Coomallo



Road

D

Shire Road



Reserve 

14.8.1991

1

Undisturbed



6.* Badgingarra

D

National Park



9.9.1979

20 est.


Not refound 15.8.1991

116

8.

Tootbardie Road 



Co

Shire Road

Reserve 

15.7.1986

150

-

Response to Disturbance



Appears to be killed by fire.  Some plants at population 2 were established on the shoulder of the road with

others in undisturbed vegetation on the road verge.



Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Unknown


Management Requirements

-  Maintain liaison with local government authorities with road verge populations.

-  Inspect all populations regularly.

-  Ensure that markers are in place at populations 2 and 8.

-  Protect from frequent fire, where possible, until research has been conducted on the fire response of the

species.


-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at all populations.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.

-  Conduct research on the susceptibility of this species to Phytophthora species.



Research Requirements 

-  Survey population 8, check number of plants now present and collect voucher specimen for collections

of Western Australian Herbarium.

-  Investigate fire response and population biology of the species.



References 

Kelly 


et al. (1990), Leigh et al. (1984), Rye and Hopper (1981), Stauffer (1968).

117

Stawellia dimorphantha F.Muell.

ANTHERICACEAE

Arrowsmith Stilt-lily

This species was described in 1870 from specimens collected by Drummond, but has been collected only a

few times since then.  It is a perennial plant to 20 cm tall, with terete, ribbed leaves and fibrous roots.  The

stems are numerous, 2-4 cm long, with stilt roots at the nodes, forming dense clumps to 30 cm in diameter.

The leaves are few, to 4.5 cm long, terminal from just below the inflorescence and surrounding it.  The

flowers are small, grouped 10-20 in condensed globular spikes, 3-4 mm wide and surrounded by

overlapping, dry, membranous bracts.  Each flower is 4-5 mm long, pale purple or cream, with six perianth

lobes, three stamens and a superior ovary.  The fruit is a grey capsule ca. 0.15 cm long, containing seeds

which are black and shiny, kidney-shaped with a prominent aril, and probably dispersed by ants.

Flowering Period:  June-December

Distribution and Habitat in the Moora District

Stawellia dimorphantha is endemic to the Moora District where it occurs over a narrow range from

Eneabba northwards.  A population noted in 1975 has not been refound recently, but as the species is most

noticeable a few years after fire it may still be present in the area.  Although known at present from one

locality the species has been recorded in the past over a range of ca. 45 km.  It grows on open areas of sand

in open low banksia woodland with 

Nuytsia floribunda, Banksia prionotes, B. attenuata and Xylomelum

angustifolium, with scrub beneath including Acacia saligna and Hakea trifurcata.  Associated species

include 


Anthocercis littorea (in recently burnt areas), Verticordia grandis,  Conospermum stoechadis and

Lechenaultia linarioides.  At the known location it grows in deep yellow sand in a flat depression between

sand ridges.  The plants become more open and spreading in shaded situations.



Conservation Status

Current:  Declared Rare Flora



Populations Known in the Moora District

Population

Shire 

Land Status



Last Survey

No. of Plants

Condition

1.  Arrowsmith

I

MRWA Road



Reserve, VCL

19.11.1992

1000+ mature

9000+ seedlings

Part of the population

burnt ca. 18 months

previously, some weed

invasion in unburnt area

1.* E of Eneabba

Ca

-



17.6.1975

-

Not refound 19.11.1992



2.* S of Dongara 

I

-



29.11.1965

-

-



Response to Disturbance

The plants are killed by fire, with good regeneration from seed, the young plants flowering two years after

a burn.  The species also grows in disturbed areas, such as the windrows of disturbed topsoil along the

edges of firebreaks, but persists in vegetation unburnt for 15 years or more.



Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Unknown


118

Management Requirements

-  Maintain liaison with Main Roads W.A., Department of Land Administration, Department of Minerals

and Energy and companies with exploration licences or mining leases in the area of the known

population.

-  Monitor the population regularly.

-  Weed control on road verges where necessary.

-  Change vesting of VCL to nature reserve to protect the population.

-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at the population.

-  Implement appropriate fire regime.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.

Research Requirements 

-  Requires further survey, particularly in recently burnt areas of conservation areas, in suitable habitat

within and around its known range.  Further effort should also be made to refind populations 2 and 3.

-  Conduct research on the susceptibility of this species to Phytophthora species.



References

Bentham (1878), Dixon and Keighery (1992), Keighery (1987), Mueller (1870), Rye and Hopper (1981).

Illustrated by G.J. Keighery.


119

Stylidium scabridum Lindl.

STYLIDIACEAE

Moth Triggerplant

Stylidium scabridum was described by Lindley in 1839 from specimens collected by James Drummond.  A

low plant to 20 cm tall, with grass-like leaves, in a basal tuft.  They are rough, to 6 cm long and 2 mm wide,

with pointed tips and rolled margins, the midnerve very broad on the underside.  They are interspersed with

short, pointed scale leaves.  The stalk of the flower head is very glandular hairy and is short, barely longer

than the leaves.  The flowers are borne in a loose raceme of ca. 12 flowers with the lower flower stalks

elongated so that the flowers are held almost on the same level.  The calyx is globose and very glandular

hairy with five lobes up to three times longer than the tube, three shorter and recurved and two longer and

united.  The petals are pale pink or whitish with a dark central streak, particularly on the lower surface, and

they are paired.  The throat of the corolla has six small, inconspicuous appendages and the labellum is

small and narrowly triangular.  The column is short and white, with black anthers, the stigma small and

rounded.

Flowering Period:  September-October

Distribution and Habitat in the Moora District

Known in the Moora District from one population south of Calingiri.  A population previously known from

ca. 8 km north of this is now extinct.  The species has also been recorded from the Merredin District in the

Tammin area (population 2) and Meckering areas and from the Narrogin District, near Narambeen.  All

these populations are now extinct and at one time the species was known only from the population in the

Moora District and one other small population in the Swan Region north-east of York.  However, in

October 1994, 5 large populations were discovered in the Swan Region east of Perth and at about the same

time two smaller populations were also found in the Merredin District.  In the Moora District, 



S. scabridum

grows in white sand over laterite in open wandoo woodland, with open scrub of



 Dryandra sessilis with

Grevillea pilulifera, Daviesia pedunculata and S. caricifolium.  The populations to the east of Perth have

been found in white to grey sand in low heath in depressions between low hills supporting open low

woodland of 

Banksia attenuata

Conservation Status

Current:  Declared Rare Flora

#

Populations Known in the Moora District

Population

Shire 

Land Status



Last Survey

No. of Plants

Condition

1.* S of Calingiri

VP

Nature Reserve 



19.9.1991

0

Possibly now extinct



3. S of Calingiri

VP

Nature Reserve 



9.9.1991

14

Fenced to prevent



grazing by rabbits,

vehicular disturbance in

area

                                                     



#

 now Priority 4 (updated at December 1999)



120

Response to Disturbance

Unknown.  Research on the response of the species to fire is being undertaken in the Swan Region.



Susceptibility to Phytophthora Dieback

Presumed not susceptible



Management Requirements

-  Monitor population regularly

-  Protect from frequent fire, where possible, until the fire response of the species is known.

-  Ensure that dieback hygiene procedures are carried out at population.

-  Collect seed for storage according to the protocols of the Threatened Flora Seed Centre at the Western

Australian Herbarium.



Research Requirements 

-  Opportunistic further survey in suitable habitat in the south of the District.



References

Erickson (1981), Grieve and Blackall (1982), Lindley (1839).



121

Thelymitra stellata Lindl.

ORCHIDACEAE

Star Sun Orchid

Named by John Lindley in 1840 from specimens collected by James Drummond in 1839, 



Thelymitra

stellata was later reduced to a variety of T. fuscolutea but following a more recent revision, has once again

been recognised as a species.  It is closely-related to 



T. jacksonii ms but differs in having smaller, lighter-

coloured flowers, an earlier flowering period and a more northerly range of distribution.  Like other

members of the genus, 

Thelymitra flowers remain closed at night or on cool, cloudy days, opening only in

warm, sunny weather.




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