Desmodium gunnii Benth. ex Hook.f.

Southern Tick-trefoil

Fl. Tasman. 1: 101 (1856) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Prostrate or ascending herb; stems 15–50 cm long, weak, sometimes rooting at nodes, glabrous or with a few short, glandular, simple hairs. Leaves mostly trifoliolate with petiolules of leaflets more or less equal; leaflets obovate to orbicular, 1–2 cm long, 4–15 mm wide, upper and lower surfaces with sparse soft curved hairs, apices obtuse; petiole 5–35 mm long; stipules 1.5–3 mm long; stipellae to 1.5 mm long. Racemes terminal, to c. 15 cm long, 4–10-flowered; pedicels initially short, lengthening to c. 1 cm as fruit matures. Flowers usually paired, distant; petals 5–6 mm long, usually pink fading to white. Pod 7–20 mm long, constricted between articles from both sides (but usually more strongly from the ventral side), densely covered with minute uncinate hairs; articles 2–6, each 3–5 mm long. Flowers spring–autumn.

CVU, EGL, EGU, GipP, Glep, GGr, HNF, HSF, MonT, NIS, OtR, SnM, Strz, VAlp, VRiv, VVP, WaP. Also ?Qld, NSW, Tas. Widespread across southern Victoria but most abundant in the eastern half of the State. Grows mainly in sclerophyll forests and woodlands.

Source: Jeanes, J.A. (1996). Fabaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 3, Dicotyledons Winteraceae to Myrtaceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Neville Walsh, 2017-09-04
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Fabales
family Fabaceae
genus Desmodium
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Desmodium gunnii in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Desmodium gunnii in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Glenelg Plain present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Northern Inland Slopes present native
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native
Otway Ranges present native
Strzelecki Ranges present native
Monaro Tablelands present native
Victorian Alps present native
Snowy Mountains present native

State distribution

Distribution map
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory