Carpobrotus modestus S.T.Blake

Inland Pigface

Contr. Queensland Herb. 7: 30 (1969) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Stems to c. 50 cm long, 3–8(–14) mm diam. Leaves 3–7(–12) cm long, 4–9(–13) mm thick, glaucous, often tinged pink, mostly slightly thicker than wide near the middle, faces flat to slightly convex, the keel smooth or crenulate near the apex. Flowers mostly c. 2(–5) cm diam., subsessile (or with pedicel to c. 3 cm long); calyx tube oblong or slightly tapered to base, slightly compressed, acutely 2-angled toward base, slightly expanded near apex; sepals 5, rarely 4, the 2 longest 8–18 mm long, keels smooth; petaloid staminodes c. 45–60, 6–12(–23) mm long, in 3 series, light purple merging to white at and near base, streaked brown close to the midline when dry; stamens c. 20–100(–300), in 1–3 series; ovary flat on top; styles 6–10, united into a column for c. 0.5 mm at base. Fruit narrowly ellipsoid to obovoid, slightly compressed, weakly 2-angled, 1.5–2 cm long. Flowers mainly Sep.–Feb.

CVU, DunT, EGL, GipP, Glep, Gold, GGr, HSF, LoM, MuM, MSB, OtP, RobP, VRiv, VVP, Wim. Also WA, SA, ?NSW. Not uncommon on shallow, often rocky soils and deeper mallee sands in drier areas in the west of the State.

Plants with measurements outside the normal range (bracketed in the above description) and with c. 200-300 stamens have been collected near Mildura. It is possible that these represent a distinct undescribed taxon, are the result of hybridization (with e.g. C. aequilaterus), or represent a polyploid race of C. modestus. They have been referred to in various treatments as Carpobrotus aff. rossii (N.W. Victoria).

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1996). Aizoaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 3, Dicotyledons Winteraceae to Myrtaceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-11-20
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Caryophyllanae
family Aizoaceae
genus Carpobrotus
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Carpobrotus modestus in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Carpobrotus modestus in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Lowan Mallee present native
Murray Mallee present native
Wimmera present native
Glenelg Plain present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Murray Scroll Belt present native
Robinvale Plains present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Dundas Tablelands present native
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales