Astelia australiana (J.H.Willis) L.B.Moore

Tall Astelia

New Zealand J. Bot. 4: 229 (1966) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Endemic

Establishment means:Native

Threat status:EPBC: vulnerable (VU); Victoria: vulnerable (v); listed in Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988

Robust, tufted plants to c. 1.8 m high, with a long, stout, branching rhizome. Leaves linear, 60–230 cm long, 5–10 cm wide, with a close, silvery and silky indumentum on the lower surface. Inflorescence a racemose panicle to 1.2 m high, many-flowered; axis rather stout; each of the 5–10 racemes 10–20 cm long, each subtended by a leaf-like bract. Flowers 12–18 mm wide, green to deep maroon, at least the males with a strong foetid odour; segments fused basally, reflexed at tips. Male or bisexual flowers with stamens shorter than the perianth. Female flowers with rudimentary stamens, sometimes producing fruit without fertilization; perianth tube fleshy, ovary c. 4–6 mm long, 3-locular. Berry ovoid to globular, 6–10 mm long, orange. Seeds 4–12, c. 2.5 mm long. Flowers Nov.–Feb.

HSF, OtR. Endemic in Victoria. Rare, confined to a few gully-heads and stream margins in the Powelltown-Beenak district (upper Latrobe and Bunyip River catchments, Tomahawk Creek), and a similar site near Lavers Hill in the Otways. Plants form large colonies on humus-rich, waterlogged soils in Nothofagus and Eucalyptus regnans forests.

Source: Conran, J.G. (1994). Liliaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Asparagales
family Asteliaceae
genus Astelia
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Astelia australiana in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Astelia australiana in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Otway Ranges present native

State distribution

Distribution map
Australian Capital Territory