Glossary

A

Adult leaves in eucalypts occur in mature trees or mallees. They are different from juvenile leaves in at least some of the characteristics colour, shape, size, and relationship to each other on the stem. In some eucalypts, adult leaves never or rarely form.

Roots that arise anywhere other than the main axis of the root.

Of leaves, arranged singly at different levels of the stem. In this key, leaves alternating up the stem, arranged in a spiral up the stem, or scattered along the stems are all keyed as alternating.

A plant that grows from seed and flowers and dies down within a year.

An anther is the part of a stamen that makes pollen.

Pressed close to the surface of the substrate.

An outgrowth from the attachment point of a seed, often fleshy and highly coloured.

Outgrowths from the attachment point of seeds, often fleshy and highly coloured.

With respect to Casuarina and Allocasuarina: the sections of the green narrow branchlets between the whorls of teeth.

At first growing horizontally and then becoming erect

An ear shaped lobe.

Ear shaped lobes.

awn:

A bristle-like structure. Awns on the 'seeds' of daisies such as Bidens, Glossocardia, and Calotis are stiff and often needle-like.

Tipped with a bristle-like structure. Awns on the 'seeds' of daisies such as Bidens, Glossocardia, and Calotis are stiff and often needle-like.

Bristle-like structures. Awns on the 'seeds' of daisies such as Bidens, Glossocardia, and Calotis are stiff and often needle-like.

The upper angle between a leaf and the stem.

In the upper angle between a leaf and the stem.

An axil is the upper angle between a leaf and the stem.

B

A pointed projection, particularly in relation to seed cases of members of the family Brassicaceae (Cabbage family).

A plant that grows from seed and flowers and dies down within two years.

Compound leaves with a main rachis and at least one pair of secondary rachises  attached to the main rachis, and with the leaflets attached to the secondary rachis(es).

A modified leaf below a flower. May be leafy, papery, or look like a petal.

A bract-like structures borne on the calyx of the flower or on the flower stalk. In Casuarina and Allocasuarina, these persist and form a woody support for the seeds as the cone matures.

Bract-like structures borne on the calyx of the flower or on the flower stalk. In Casuarina and Allocasuarina, these persist and form a woody support for the seeds as the cone matures.

Modified leaves below a flower. May be leafy, papery, spiny, or look like petals.

A short underground stem with fleshy leaves or leaf bases that function as food storage organs during dormancy.

Small bulbs, produced from several parts of plants, both above-ground, and underground. New plants can sprout from bulbils.

Short underground stems with fleshy leaves or leaf bases that function as food storage organs during dormancy.

C

Plural of calyx. Cup the flowers. Consist of a number of sepals which may be separate or united.

Cups the flower. Consists of a number of sepals which may be separate or united.

A unit of the female part of a flower (gynoecium), consisting of the ovary containing an ovule(s) (eggs), and the pollen receptive stigma, usually with a stalk-like style between them. Flowers may have one to several carpels per gynoecium.

Units of the female part of a flower (gynoecium), consisting of the ovary containing an ovule(s) (eggs), and the pollen receptive stigma, usually with a stalk-like style between them. Flowers may have one to several carpels per gynoecium.

Long cylindrical clusters of flowers, usually hanging down. The flowers have inconspicuous petals or no petals.

Covered with long weak, loosely entangled hairs, resembling a spiderweb

Compound flower head - a flower head with a number of partial heads, each with bracts around it, arranged to form a larger head, itself surrounded by bracts.  Compound leaf - a leaf normally with at least two leaflets. Occasionally the side leaflets are suppressed, so that there is only one leaflet, but the join between the single leaflet and the leaf stem can be seen. Compound flower cluster - a branched cluster formed from a number of single clusters.

A seed case, usually woody, in pines, cypresses, casuarinas, and banksias. Cones in Podocarpus are not woody. 

Seed cases, usually woody, in pines, cypresses, casuarinas, and banksias. Cones in Podocarpus are not woody. 

Juvenile growth appearing after damage to the trunks of trees. 

Shaped like the heart on a playing card e.g. cordate leaves, or the broad rounded lobes at the base of a leaf.

The inner whorl (petals) of a flower, which may be free from each other or joined into a tube that usually has free lobes.

Composed of long, soft, hairs, which are entangled and interlaced, resembling raw cotton in appearance.

The leafy top of a tree.

The leafy top of trees.

D

A plant that loses its leaves, usually in Winter.

Much branched, like the branches of a tree.

Of two forms similar in type but different in shape and/or size

Depressions or pits formed at the junction of two veins on the undersurface of leaves, usually in rainforest plants.

E

Rising above the water.

Of leaves: smooth edges which are not toothed, divided or lobed.

A herb that lives much shorter than a year.

A plant that grows on another plant for mechanical support but is not parasitic i.e. it is nutritionally independent of the plant is grows on.

Of a plant: growing on another plant, but not drawing nutrition from the host plant.

Pointing up e.g. flowers, leaves. Erect plants are upright and taller than wide.

Does not lose its leaves seasonally.

F

A very low shrubland community characteristic of sites where plant growth is severely restricted by extremes of cold and by exposure to wind.

Appearing like felt.

A flower which produces pollen and/or has an ovary(s) which will form a seed(s).

The narrow stalks which support the anthers.

A tube derived from the tissue at the base of the flower and bearing the sepals, petals, and stamens. Also known as a hypanthium.

A small flower within a head.

A floret is a small flower within a flower head.

Treed area with the canopies of the trees touching each other or overlapping.

Easily crumbled.

In this key, a general term for structures of any texture (except fleshy) that enclose the seed(s).

In this key, a general term for a structure of any texture (except fleshy) that encloses the seed(s).

G

A structure which secretes fluids. Glands on wattle 'leaves' secrete a sugary solution.

Structures which secrete fluids. Glands on wattle 'leaves' secrete a sugary solution.

Pale bluish green in colour, usually due to a thin waxy or powdery covering that is easily rubbed off.

A community of plants dominated by perennial grasses.

The female part of a flower, including ovary, style and stigma.

H

The general appearance of a plant, including the growth form and how the stems are arranged.

The external environment in which plants live e.g. forest, woodland, grassland.

The external environments in which plants live e.g. forest, woodland, grassland.

A dense cluster of more or less stalkless flowers or florets e.g. daisies, wattles.

Plural of head. A dense cluster of more or less stalkless flowers or florets e.g. daisies, wattles.

A plant community dominated by small shrubs close together, most of which have small, hard leaves.

A plant that does not produce wood, or is woody only at the base.

Not woody.

A treeless area, usually in alpine or subalpine areas, dominated by herbs and grasses, often with scattered shrubs.

Treeless areas, usually in alpine or subalpine areas, dominated by herbs and grasses, often with scattered shrubs.

Plants that do not produce wood, or are woody only at the base.

A tube or cup-shaped structure derived from the tissue at the base of the flower and bearing the sepals, petals (when present), and the stamens. Also known as a floral tube.

I

A group of flowers on a stem of a plant. The stem may be single or branched.

Groups of flowers on a stem of a plant. The stem(s) may be single or branched.

Intermediate leaves in species of Eucalyptus etc are at the growth phase between juvenile and adult leaves. Intermediate leaves in Myriopyllum species have characteristcs between those of submerged and emergent leaves.

A plant that does not grow naturally in the area where it is growing. A few plants grow naturally in some parts of the area covered by this key, but are introduced in other parts of the area.

J

Juvenile stems and leaves occur in young plants or in regrowth e.g. after fire. They are often different in colour and proportions from adult growth.

K

The keel of a pea flower is formed of two narrow petals in the middle of the flower, which cover the ovary. They are almost or fully joined together. The keel of the pea-like flowers of Comesperma and Polygala is a petal in the middle of the flower, lobed or pouched in Comesperma, usually crested with a pair of branched or tufted appendages in Polygala.

A keel otherwise is a thickened ridge like the keel of a boat.

Referring to a thickened ridge like the keel of a boat.

The keel of a pea flower is formed of two narrow petals in the middle of the flower, which cover the ovary. They are almost or fully joined together. The keel of the pea-like flowers of Comesperma and Polygala is a petal in the middle of the flower, lobed or pouched in Comesperma, usually crested with a pair of branched or tufted appendages in Polygala.

A keel otherwise is a thickened ridge like the keel of a boat.

L

A modified petal in the middle of an orchid or trigger-plant flower, which often moves when touched.

Small, corky pores or lines in the stem.

A swelling, usually conspicuous, which contains dormant buds, at the base of the stem(s) of a tree or shrub, e.g. in mallees and banksias..

Narrow with respect to the length e.g. of leaves.

M

The main longitudinal vein in a leaf, usually equally distant from both margins,

The main vein is the main longitudinal vein in a leaf, usually equally distant from both margins,

A multi-trunked Eucalyptus, Corymbia, or Angophora, the trunks arising from a swollen woody stem at or below ground level (lignotuber).

A short stiff to sharp point terminating a leaf or sepal.

N

An introduced plant now freely reproducing in the area covered the key.

A specialised gland that secretes nectar. The shape of the nectary lobe or pouch is used in identification of some species of Ranunculus.

Nodes are the points on a stem from which the leaves arise.

O

An ovary is the enlarged part of the female part of a flower, which produces seeds after pollination.

The enlarged part of the female part of a flower, which produces seeds after pollination.

P

A branched flower cluster, often large and loose.

Branched flower clusters, often large and loose

A tuft of bristles, hairs, or scales, at the apex of the seed of a plant, usually in the family Asteraceae (daisies).

Small flower heads of plants in the family Asteraceae, which together form a compound head.

Shield-like. In peltate leaves the leaf stalk is attached to the leaf away from the margins.

Lasting for three or more years. Many perennial herbs die down and resprout in a following season from the root.

The petal-like parts of the flower, including the sepals and petals. In some plant families, when there is only one whorl, the petal-like segments are called 'petals'.

Coloured structures forming the inner ring of leaf-like structures in a flower. Coloured bracts below the flower, daisy ligules (the single petal on an outer floret), and the single coloured ring of structures in eg Grevillea  and Hakea flowers are keyed as petals.

A secondary rachis of a compound leaf attached to the side of the main rachis and bearing the leaflets or tertiary rachises.

Secondary rachises of a compound leaf attached to the side of the main rachis and bearing the leaflets or tertiary rachises.

In many flowers of the family Proteaceae, the style is next to the anthers in bud and picks up pollen from them. When the flower opens, the pollen is deposited on the pollinating bird. The style then becomes sticky and accepts pollen from a pollinator.

Flat on the ground.

R

A flower group where the flower stems are attached to a single axis. A raceme where the flowers are stalkless is usually called a spike.

A raceme is a flower group where the flower stems are attached to a single axis. A raceme where the flowers are stalkless is usually called a spike.

The axis of a compound leaf, that bears the leaflets or pinnae (secondary rachises). The axis of an elongated flower cluster that bears the flowers. Sometimes spelled rhachis.

The axes of a compound leaf, that bear the pinnae or leaflets. The axes of an elongated flower cluster bearing the flowers. Sometimes spelled rhachises.

Forest dominated by broad leaved trees, the canopies of the trees forming a continuous layer. Eucalypts usually not present.

Bearing one or more underground stems.

An underground stem, sometimes acting as a narrow storage organ.

Underground stems, sometimes acting as narrow storage organs.

A circle of leaves radiating from a stem, usually close to the ground at the base of a plant.

Circles of leaves radiating from stems, usually close to the ground at the bases of plants.

S

Leaves reduced to scales are small, rudimentary, and often thin and membranous. Cone scales are the individiual woody plates.

Flower stalk. Also the part of a flower stalk below the flowers of an inflorescence.

Flower stalks. Also the parts of flower stalks below the flowers of an inflorescence.

Secondary veins in leaves are all the veins in the leaf other than the primary vein (midrib).

Plants that lose their leaves, usually in winter, for a short time, or in some years do not lose their leaves e.g. in mild winters.

Structures (usually green) forming the outer ring or the single ring of petal-like structures in a flower. If there is no inner ring of petals, (for example) 5 sepals are keyed as 0 and 5 petals in this key.

A tubular structure encircling the stem and forming the base of a leaf.

Tubular structures encircling the stems and forming the bases of leaves.

A woody branched plant usually with many stems.

A plant community dominated by shrubs close together.

Woody branched plants usually with many stems.

Densely covered with fine, soft, straight, appressed hairs, with a lustrous sheen and satiny to the touch.

A simple hair is unbranched. A simple leaf is not dissected or divided into leaflets.

A notch or depression in the margin.

A bract, sometimes petal-like, enclosing a flower spike or flower cluster.

Bracts, sometimes petal-like, enclosing a flower spike or flower cluster.

A group of stalkless flowers or flower heads attached to a common axis.

A spike is a group of stalkless flowers or flower heads attached to a common axis.

A slender hollow protuberance, usually arising from the back of a flower, often secreting nectar.

The male part of a flower, consisting of a pollen producing anther, usually at the end of a narrow stalk (filament).

The male parts of a flower, consisting of a pollen producing anther, usually at the end of narrow stalks (filaments).

Stamens that do not produce pollen. Consist of the stalks of the stames only, which may be narrow filamens or look like petals.

The large upper petal of a pea flower.

Stellate hairs are hairs with branches that radiate from a single point in a star shape.

A sterile flower neither produces pollen nor has an ovary(s) which will form a seed(s). A sterile stamen does not produce pollen. A sterile ovary will not form seed(s).

The receptive part of the female reproductive organ of a flower, where pollen is deposited.

 A stigma is the receptive part of the female reproductive organ of a flower, where pollen is deposited.

Pertaining to a leafy, woody, or membranous outgrowth, usually in pairs, at the base of a bract or leaf stalk.

A leafy, woody, or membranous outgrowth, usually in pairs, at the base of a bract or leaf stalk.

Leafy, woody, or membranous outgrowths, usually in pairs, at the base of bracts or leaf stalks.

Of a plant which produces stems which grow along the ground and root at the nodes (stolons).

Stems which grow along the ground, rooting at the nodes. Also known as runners.

With longitudinal ridges.

Longitudinal ridges.

The part of the female reproductive organ of the flower above the ovary, which bears the stigma. Sometimes absent.

Styles are the part of the female reproductive organ of the flower above the ovary, which bears the stigma. Sometimes absent.

Standing below or close under; enclosing. E.g. bracts subtending a flower.

Standing below or close under; enclosing. E.g. bracts subtending a flower.

T

In some plant families, a petal-like structure is called a tepal. Tepals may be in one or two whorls.

In some plant families, the petal-like structures are called tepals. They may be in one or two whorls.

Of bark, marked in a pattern of squares. Chequered.

Covered in dense short intertwined hairs.

A cover of dense short intertwined hairs.

Compound leaves with a main rachis and at least one pair of secondary rachises attached to the main rachis, at least one pair of tertiary rachises attached to the secondary tachises, and the leaflets attached to the tertiary rachis(es).

Underground stem that is a storage organ.

Underground stems that are storage organs.

A dried plant specimen deposited at on or more major herbaria. The published description of a species is based on the type specimen.

U

A flower cluster where the flower stems arise from the top of a common stalk.

Flower clusters where the flower stems arise from the top of a common stalk.

V

One section of a seed case, anther, etc after it has split open. The roof of a gumnut splits into usually triangular valves as the seeds are released.

Sections of a seed case, anther, etc after it has split open. The roof of a gumnut splits into usually triangular valves as the seeds are released.

A hollow strand of tissue in a leaf, which conducts liquid.

Hollow strands of tissue in leaves, which conduct liquid.

Densely covered in fine, short, erect hairs.

W

Of 'seeds' - a membranous expansion that helps the 'seed' to float on the wind. Of petals - one of the two smaller petals in the middle of a pea flower that stick out forwards or sideways around the keel petals. 

Of 'seeds' - relating to membranous expansions that help the 'seed' to float on the wind. Of petals -relating to the two smaller petals in the middle of a pea flower that stick out forwards or sideways around the keel petals. 

Of 'seeds' - membranous expansions that helps the 'seed' to float on the wind. Of petals - the two smaller petals in the middle of a pea flower that stick out forwards or sideways around the keel petals. 

Treed area with the canopies of the trees not touching each other. The trees may be fairly close together or far apart.

Hairs that are long, curled, and matted together like wool.