Maireana ciliata (F.Muell.) Paul G.Wilson

Fissure Weed

Nuytsia 2: 27 (1975) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Threat status:Victoria: data deficient (k)

Decumbent to erect perennial; taproot slender; branchlets woolly, to c. 30 cm long. Leaves alternate, linear to narrowly oblong, 4–10 mm long, silky-hairy at least on lower surface. Fruiting perianth pentagonal to circular, c. 3 mm diam. (not including the long, silky hair), hard, concave at the apex otherwise ± flat and wing-like, 5 ridged, one radiating from each angle of the pentagon, sometimes with a slight pentagonal ridge. Fruits Oct.–Jan.

RobP, VRiv. Also NT, SA, Qld, NSW. Apparently confined to grassland plains around the lake system west of Kerang, with an older record from the Hattah-Kulkyne area.

Previously overlooked in Victoria due to the morphological similarities with M. pentagona. These two species may be extremely difficult to distinguish. Maireana ciliata is defined by its fruits with 5 small ridges that radiate from the centre to each of the 5 corners of the fruit. Whereas fruits of M. pentagona have a raised ridge that surrounds the 5-angled fruit. However, plants show a range of fruit types from one extreme to the other, making this distinction unclear. In some parts of the State these two species are thought to co-occur, with two entities discernible by differences in habit. Further work may be required to delimit these two species. 

Created by: Andre Messina, 2015-04-20
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-01-11
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Caryophyllanae
genus Maireana
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Maireana ciliata in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Maireana ciliata in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Riverina present native
Robinvale Plains present native