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Platylobium formosum

Platylobium formosum, also known as Handsome Flat-pea, is a shrub that is endemic to Australia. It is a member of the family Fabaceae and of the genus Platylobium.

Description[edit]

The species is an erect or straggling shrub with wiry stems which usually grows to a height of between 1 to 2 metres. The leaves are opposite with very short, almost unnoticeable petioles. The leaf surface has a pronounced reticulation of veins on the surface and is dark green above and lighter below. The leaf size ranges from 2 to 5 cm in length and 1 to 2.3 cm in width.[1][2]

The flowers appear in spring, between September and November in their native range. These are orange-yellow with a red centre, with red markings in the centre, on the tip of the keel and on the back of the standard. and are supported by a long stalk which is covered by hairs and arises from the leaf axil. The pods which follow are flat, glabrous or hairy and about 2 to 4 cm in length.[1][2]

Taxonomy[edit]

The species was first formally described by botanist James Edward Smith in 1793 in A Specimen of the Botany of New Holland. The specific epithet formosum is derived from the Latin word for beautiful.

Distribution[edit]

This species is found in New South Wales and Queensland.[3] It is common and widespread in habitats ranging from heathland to rainforest margins.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b New South Wales Flora Online: Platylobium formosum Royal Botanic Gardens & Domain Trust, Sydney, Australia.
  2. ^ a b Costermans, L. (1981). Native Trees and Shrubs of South-eastern Australia. Australia: Rigby. ISBN 072701403x. 
  3. ^ "Platylobium formosum". Australian Plant Name Index (APNI), IBIS database. Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research, Australian Government, Canberra. Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
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