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Brunonia R.Br.

Prodr.Fl.Nov.Holland. 589 (1810)
Name Status

Scientific Description

Common name. Pincushions. Family Goodeniaceae (Brunoniaceae).

Habit and leaf form. Shrubs, or herbs. Annual, or perennial. Leaves basal (mostly), or basal and cauline. Plants with a basal concentration of leaves, or with neither basal nor terminal concentrations of leaves. Mesophytic, or xerophytic. Leaves alternate; spiral; petiolate; non-sheathing; simple; epulvinate. Leaf blades entire; linear, or obovate (to oblanceolate or spathulate); pinnately veined; cross-venulate. Leaves without stipules. Leaf blade margins entire. Leaves without a persistent basal meristem. Leaf anatomy. Hairs present (very variable in hairiness); complex hairs present, or absent. Extra-floral nectaries absent (ass.). Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening absent, or developing from a conventional cambial ring.

Reproductive type, pollination. Fertile flowers hermaphrodite. Unisexual flowers absent. Plants hermaphrodite. Entomophilous. Pollination mechanism conspicuously specialized (involving a stylar modification for pollen presentation).

Inflorescence and flower features. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; in cymes, or in heads. The terminal inflorescence unit cymose, or racemose. Inflorescences scapiflorous; terminal; scapes with a single terminal head, or numerous heads up to 35 mm diameter composed of shortly pedicellate cymes; with involucral bracts (green, surrounding a terminal head. Outer bracts ovate or narrowly ovate, apex acuminate and often reflexed. Inner bracts narrowly ovate to oblong and shorter); pseudanthial. Flowers subsessile, or sessile; bracteate (several hyaline bracts to each flower, elliptic to oblong); bracteolate (4, 3–4 mm long, scarious, glabrous); small to medium-sized; regular; 5 merous; cyclic; tetracyclic. Free hypanthium absent. Hypogynous disk present, or absent. Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; (8–)10; 2 -whorled; isomerous, or anisomerous. Calyx present; 5; 1 -whorled; gamosepalous; blunt-lobed; tubular. Calyx lobes linear. Corolla present; 5; 1 -whorled; gamopetalous; lobed. Corolla lobes about the same length as the tube. Corolla tube not noticeably adaxially split. Corolla valvate; narrowly tubular; regular, or bilabiate (slightly); bright blue. Corolla lobes oblong (B), or linear (A). Androecial members definite in number. Androecium 5. Androecial members adnate (KC); all equal (ass.); coherent; 1 -whorled. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 5. Staminal insertion near the base of the corolla tube. Stamens all inserted at the same level; all more or less similar in shape (ass.); isomerous with the perianth; oppositisepalous (at the base of the corolla tube, epipetalous); all alternating with the corolla members. Anthers cohering (forming a tube); dehiscing via longitudinal slits; introrse; tetrasporangiate. Pollen shed in aggregates, or shed as single grains. Gynoecium 2 carpelled. The pistil 1–2 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous (KC); synstylovarious to eu-syncarpous; superior. Ovary unilocular to plurilocular; 1–2 locular (the septum incomplete above); sessile (ass.). Gynoecium stylate. Styles 1; bearing an ‘indusium’ beneath the stigma. Indusium cupular. Styles apical. Stigmas 1; 2 - lobed. Ovules in the single cavity 1 (attached basally on septum or ridge); ascending; non-arillate; anatropous.

Fruit and seed features. Fruit non-fleshy; indehiscent; capsular-indehiscent, or a nut. Seeds copiously endospermic. Endosperm oily. Seeds winged, or wingless. Cotyledons 2. Embryo straight.

Etymology. After Robert Brown (1773–1858).

J. Gathe and Leslie Watson, 8 September 2016

Taxonomic Literature

  • Australian Biological Resources Study 1992. Flora of Australia. Volume 35, Brunoniaceae, Goodeniaceae. Australian Govt. Pub. Service.. Canberra..