L. sisymbrioides subsp. solandri (Kirk) Thell., L. sisymbrioides subsp. solandri var. typicum Thell., Lepidium matau Petrie, Lepidium sisymbrioides subsp. matau var. lobulatum Thell., Lepidium sisymbrioides subsp. matau (Petrie) Thell.
Vascular – Native
Dicotyledonous Herbs other than Composites
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
Current conservation status
The conservation status of all known New Zealand vascular plant taxa at the rank of species and below were reassessed in 2017 using the New Zealand Threat Classification System (NZTCS). This report includes a statistical summary and brief notes on changes since 2012 and replaces all previous NZTCS lists for vascular plants. Authors: By Peter J. de Lange, Jeremy R. Rolfe, John W. Barkla, Shannel P. Courtney, Paul D. Champion, Leon R. Perrie, Sarah M. Beadel, Kerry A. Ford, Ilse Breitwieser, Ines Schönberger, Rowan Hindmarsh-Walls, Peter B. Heenan and Kate Ladley.
2018 | Threatened – Nationally Critical
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | Threatened – Nationally Endangered | Qualifiers: DP, Sp
2009 | Threatened – Nationally Endangered | Qualifiers: DP
2004 | Threatened – Nationally Critical
Endemic to S. Island, E. of the main divide from N. Canterbury to C. Otago (Galloway district, Manuherikia Valley)
Short and tall tussock grassland, bare hillsides, salt pans, grey scrub and other poorly vegetated ground. On open clay or salt pans, limestone talus, gravel veneers overlying schist, mudstone, or eroded silts and clays.
Perennial dioecious herb, with up to 24 compact, leafy rosettes. Rootstock deep rooted, up to 28 mm diam. near crown; stems spreading to erect, up to 60 mm long, 10.0 mm wide. Basal and lower stem leaves persistent, pinnatifid, pinnate, to bipinnatifid, narrow-oblong to oblong, up to 100 mm long, green, green-brown, or brown, central part of lamina 0.7–6.2 mm wide; pinnae in 14–32 pairs, linear, obovate or broadly oblong, with up to 5 secondary pinnae, terminal pinnae 3.0–16.0 x 1.0–4.9 mm, lateral pinnae 2.6–11.3 x 0.8–3.9 mm. Middle stem leaves similar, often becoming shallowly pinnatifid, serrate, or entire. Cauline leaves 2.5–19.8 x 1.2–9.8 mm, with up to 3 serrations or small lobes, or entire. Inflorescences terminal, 1.5–16.0 cm long, 0.8–3.7 mm diam. at base, usually spreading to ascending, with up to 12 lateral branches, glabrous to sparsely hairy; pedicels 2.5– 6.5 mm long, 0.2–0.35 mm wide, slightly recurved, adaxial surface glabrous to moderately hairy, abaxial surface glabrous to rarely sparsely hairy. Flowers up to 4 mm wide. Sepals 0.7–1.3 x 0.7–1.6 mm, green to maroon, sparsely to moderately hairy, rarely glabrous, margins scarious, apex obtuse. Petals usually absent, rarely present and then clawed, white, limb obovate, apex emarginate; males: 1.3–1.5 mm long; females: 0.8–1.1 mm long. Female flowers: ovary 1.0–2.4 x 1.1–1.8 mm, usually orbicular to rhomboid, sometimes ovate, sparsely to moderately hairy, rarely glabrous; style up to 0.1–0.4 mm long; stigma 0.3–0.4 mm wide; 3–7 staminodes, 0.8–1.4 mm long, rarely with malformed anthers to 0.3 mm long. Male flowers: 4–6 stamens, 1.5–2.8 mm long, white; anthers 0.3–0.6 mm long, white or maroon; ovary rudimentary, 0.2–1.1 x 0.3–1.3 mm. Nectaries 0.25–0.5 mm long, green, green-red, to red, oblong. Siliques 3.1–5.0 x 2.3–3.8 mm, usually orbicular to rhomboid, sometimes ovate, suture usually maroon, apex emarginate to retuse, style base often persistent. Seed usually obovate, rarely obovateoblong, straighter along one margin, compressed but with broad rounded margins, 1.7–2.5 mm long, not winged; both surfaces with a distinct groove from hilum at base towards apex, and the seed folded around it; apex broad and rounded; base cuneate or slightly rounded. Testa dull, orange or orange-brown to dark henna, with a fine reticulum of very thickwalled cells.
Distinguished from L. sisymbrioides by shorter, wider cauline leaves, shorter terminal and primary pinnae with less frequent secondary lobing; more hairy sepals and ovaries; broader ovaries; longer stamen filaments; and ecology.
September - January
September - February
Mucilaginous seeds are dispersed by attachment and possibly wind and water (Thorsen et al., 2009).
Easily grown from fresh seed.
Less than 1000 plants are known in the wild. Few sites protected. All sites threatened by weed competition, animal browsing, and for most sites changes in land-use management.
lepidium: Scale-shaped (pods)
solandri: Named after Daniel Carlsson Solander (19 February 1733 - 13 May 1782) who was a Swedish naturalist and an apostle of Carl Linnaeus.
Where To Buy
Not commercially available.
Description from: Heenan et al 2007.
References and further reading
Heenan, P.B.; Mitchell, A.D.; McLenachan, P.A.; Lockhart, P.J.; de Lange, P.J. 2007: Natural variation and conservation of Lepidium sisymbrioides Hook.f. and L. solandri Kirk (Brassicaceae) in South Island, New Zealand, based on morphological and DNA sequence data. New Zealand Journal of Botany 45: 237-264.
Thorsen, M. J.; Dickinson, K. J. M.; Seddon, P. J. 2009. Seed dispersal systems in the New Zealand flora. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics 11: 285-309