Australian Tropical Rainforest Plants - Online edition

Cyperus decompositus (R.Br.) F.Muell.

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Herbarium specimen. © Australian Tropical Herbarium
Herbarium specimen. © Australian Tropical Herbarium

Mueller, F.J.H. von (1874) Fragmenta Phytographiae Australiae 8: 267.


Usually flowers and fruits when about 1-2 m tall.


Leaf blades about 81-120 x 1-2 cm, V-shaped in transverse section particularly towards the base. Margin and midrib on the lower surface finely toothed.


Inflorescence terminal, produced on a long peduncle which usually ends in a whorl of leafy bracts, sometimes with spaced leafy bracts at various points on the peduncle. Inflorescence a panicle of spikes.


Nut about 2.5 mm long. Perianth persistent at the base of the nut. Embryo about 1 mm long.


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Distribution and Ecology

Occurs in NT, CYP, NEQ, CEQ and southwards as far as south-eastern Queensland. Altitudinal range from near sea level to 200 m. Grows in open forest, rain forest and beach forest.

Natural History & Notes

Food plant for the larval stages of the Six-spot Skipper Butterfly. Common & Waterhouse (1981).

Mariscus decompositus R.Br., Prod. : 218 (1810), Type: Northern Australia, R. Brown; holo: BM?.
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