Myosotis australis var. conspicua Cheeseman, Myosotis saxatilis Petrie
Vascular – Native
Herbs - Dicotyledons 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 threat classification 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) – more information about this can be found on the NZTCS website 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. Please note, threat classifications are often suggested by authors when publications fall between NZTCS assessment periods – a suggested threat classification status has not been assessed by the NZTCS panel.
2017 | Not Threatened | Qualifiers: SO
Previous conservation statuses
2012 | Not Threatened
2009 | Not Threatened
2004 | Not Threatened
?Indigenous. North and South Islands.
Montane to alpine. Mostly grassland, cliffs and other open rocky and stony places
Gracile, tufted, perennial herb. Rosette usually single, leaves spathulate or lamina elliptic, 20-60 × 4-12 mm, tip rounded and ± mucronate, petiole , more less equal to lamina-length, narrow but ill-defined; hairs on upper surface spreading, uniform, fine, crowded, often hooked, on undersurface sparser, shorter, retrorse. Lateral branches ascending or erect (not rooting from nodes), few to many, up to 300 mm long, internodes usually equal to or greater than leaves. Upper stem-leaves sessile, spathulate to oblong, mostly 10-15 mm long, tip subacute; hairs on upper surface silky, ± appressed, overlapping, on undersurface sparser, shorter, irregularly arranged. Cymes mostly ebracteate, except sometimes towards base, mostly simple and terminal, either on primary laterals or on secondary laterals arising from axils of stem-leaves; internodes between fruits greater than calyx; pedicels very short. Calyx c. 4 mm long, lobes cut for greater than half calyx length, narrow, subacute; hairs long and straight towards tips, shorter and hooked towards base, with very short sparse hairs overall. Corolla white or yellow, tube equal to or greater in length of calyx, widest at top, lobes rounded, concave; filaments very short, fixed below scales, anther-tips barely reaching scales; style more or less equal to tube length in flower. Nutlet 1.4-2.1 × 0.8-1.0 mm, ovate to ovate-elliptic, black.
Even with the change in rank for Myosotis australis var. lytteltonensis (see de Lange et al. 2010), the remaining members of the Myosotis australis complex are in serious need ot revision. Collectively these entities, unified here as Myosotis australis sensu lato can be recognised by the calyx which is 3-6 mm long and deeply lobed, and clad with numerous hooked (uncinate) hairs, and by the anther-tips not projecting above the scales. That said distinct entities can be recognised of which the most common entity is the yellow-flowered plant illustrated on this fact sheet and often known as Myosotis “australis yellow”, other entities included within M. australis have white flowers, and include M. saxatilis Petrie and M. “australis small white”. There is good evidence that all of these warrant elevation to species rank. However, to do so would at this stage be premature until a full comparison with the type of M. australis (which is Australian) is undertaken along with the critical examination of the range of variation in Australian M. australis. Further, there are other small, white-flowered plants present in Central Otago that might be palced within M. australis, and these too require careful study.
October - March
December - May
Easily grown from fresh seed and in ideal conditions will freely self sow in gardens, However, along with most other indigenous Myosotis, members of the M. australis complex are prone to mildew and rust infections. They also dislike humid climates.
Where To Buy
Not commercially available
Fact Sheet prepared for NZPCN by P.J. de Lange 1 February 2008. Description based on Allan (1961).
References and further reading
Allan, H.H. 1961: Flora of New Zealand. Vol. I. Goverment Printer, Wellington.
de Lange, P.J.; Heenan, P.B.; Norton, D.A.; Rolfe, J.R.; Sawyer, J.W.D. 2010: Threatened Plants of New Zealand. Canterbury University Press, Christchurch.
NZPCN Fact Sheet citation
Please cite as: de Lange, P.J. (Year at time of access): Myosotis australis Fact Sheet (content continuously updated). New Zealand Plant Conservation Network. https://www.nzpcn.org.nz/flora/species/myosotis-australis/ (Date website was queried)