Lomandra spicata (LOMANDRACEAE) Orange Lomandra, Rainforest Lomandra

Plants to Plant

A lomandra of subtropical and moister dry rainforest. A tufted, grass-like plant growing to 80 cm tall related to the grass tree. Was in Xanthorrhoeaceae, now in Lomandraceae. Grows in most types of rainforest, to 1300 m altitude; north from Mt Royal, NSW. Narrow, strap-like leaves up to 80 cm long and up to 12 mm wide with a pointed-toothed somewhat rounded tip. More blue-grey than L. hystrix. Propagation from fresh seed which has been removed from the capsule. Will germinate after two months. This plant is a host plant for a rare skipper butterfly Trapezites genevieveae, Trapezites praxedes, and Trapezites symmomus.

Photo: Robert Whyte

Inflorescences

Male inflorescence unbranched or rarely with short branches at lowest nodes or the rachis forked; scape two or more times longer than rachis, flattened; flower clusters whorled. Female inflorescence unbranched, the rachis shorter in relation to the scape, otherwise similar to male inflorescence – PlantNet.

Photo: Robert Whyte

Fruit closeup

A spike of shiny, globular, orange fruits each contain a hard brown seed. Useful for heavily shaded, preferably moist sites. Susceptible to damping off and fungal attack if mulch piled up against the base of the plant.

Photo: Robert Whyte