Short-leaf Early Nancy
Patch of Fruiting Females
Short-leaf Early Nancy
New Male Flower
Short-leaf Early Nancy (Wurmbea dioica ssp brevifolia)Class: Plants (Plantae) - Other Small Plants
Order: Liliales
Family: Colchicaceae
Species: Short-leaf Early Nancy (Wurmbea dioica ssp brevifolia)
This Photo:     Male Flower Stem
Synonym: Anguillaria dioica
Other name: Harbinger of Spring

General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA) and elsewhere
What a happy little flowering plant this is.
It's like it's got a target painted on it saying "Look at me, spring is here!"

Very bold, 6 petaled (actually 3 petals + 3 sepals), white flowers rimmed with deep maroon/purple.
With up to 5 or more flowers on one little stem.
It has 3 leaves, one basal, two wrapped from the stem (one in the mid section, the other under the flowers). The higher leaf looks like a hand holding the flower stem.
It's been 10 years since we've seen one of these flowers and were so pleased to find them on Ellura.
The top leaf being truncated at the point of narrowing is diagnostic. However, you need to ensure it hasn't been eaten!
In the photo "Patch of Fruiting Females" you can see all the short upper leaves (hence ssp brevifolia), which are starting to dry & yellow.

Copyright © 2013- Brett & Marie Smith. All Rights Reserved. Photographed 18-Aug-2013
This species is classed as LC (Least Concern) in the Murray Mallee, SA, by DENR (Regional Species Status Assessments, July 2010)