Leaf, front (or back?)
|Class:||Plants (Plantae) - Land Plants (Charophyta) - Land Plants (Equisetopsida) - Other Small Plants|
|Family:||Asparagus (Asparagaceae) iNaturalist Observation|
|Species:||Scented Mat-rush (Lomandra effusa)|
|This Photo:||Leaf, cross section|
|Other name:||Scented Irongrass|
Thank you Dr Kym Nicolson for confirming the id of this species for us
General Species Information:
Found on Ellura (in the Murray Mallee, SA), the Riverland and elsewhere
Funny how some specimens take your interest. We found a small group of these nearly a year ago and have been monitoring them ever since; waiting in anticipation for them to flower so we could identify them.
Strangely one is left alone yet the other 4 or 5 are constantly eaten right down.
The flowers have a lovely aroma, but watch your eyes if you smell them. The leaves are very stiff and sharp, nearly spines. Cream flowers with 3 petals + 3 sepals (looks like 6 petals)
Leaves are long, thin, ribbed all around and a half circle in cross section. Reed like. Heavily toothed (but not easily visible; a magnifying glass helps). They dry on the tip to a 2-pronged fork.
It's hard to imagine why anything would find them palatable. We surmise it can only be kangaroos as no other animal would be able to get to the top leaves without injuring itself; and we've seen kangaroos eating Westringia rigida, so it's not a stretch to see them enjoying these as well.