Olearia lirata (Sims) Hutch.

Snowy Daisy-bush

Gard. Chron., ser. 3, 61: 14, fig. 4 (1917) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Shrub to c. 4 m high; branchlets and leaf undersurfaces greyish-white with fine, dense, stellate hairs. Leaves alternate, petiolate, lanceolate 30–150 mm long; 5–35 mm wide; upper surface green, finally glabrous and sub-lustrous, often with scattered stellate hairs when young; venation usually distinctly impressed; margin entire or obscurely sinuate or dentate. Capitula 12–25 mm diam., in loose terminal panicles or corymbs; peduncles mostly 5–12 mm long; involucre c. hemispherical, 3.5–4.5 mm long; bracts 3–4-seriate, graduating, all or the outer ones densely pubescent, ciliate toward apex. Ray florets 10–16, white, 4–8 mm long; disc florets 9–14, cream to yellow. Cypsela flattened-obovoid, 6-ribbed, 1.5–2 mm long, sparsely sericeous; pappus bristles 3.5–4.5 mm long Flowers Aug.–Jan.

CVU, EGL, EGU, GipP, Gold, GGr, HFE, HNF, HSF, MonT, NIS, OtP, OtR, SnM, Strz, VAlp, VVP, WaP, WPro. Also NSW, Tas. Common in moist forest and scrub east from the Otway Range, ranging from near sea-level to the subalps.

A highly plastic species which can differ significantly depending on the local environment. Plants growing in wet forest can obtain a height of up to 4 m and have leaves in excess of 10 cm long and 3 cm wide, whereas plants in dry exposed sites may c. 1 m high and have very short, narrow, and sometimes slightly toothed leaves. On the Errinundra Plateau and near-by ranges plants have been observed to grade with increased elevation from a somewhat typical form at lower sites to a form resembling O. phlogopappa subsp. flavescens or subsp. continentalis (low plants with leaves that are thick and densely hairy on the undersurface) at higher sites.

Despite this very close association with O. phlogopappa, O. lirata can generally be distinguished by its lanceolate leaves with entire margins and more or less acuminate apex, deeply impressed venation and less densely hairy leaf undersurface that usually lacks sessile glands (but see note under O. phlogopappa subsp. salicina).     

See note under O. rugosa subsp. rugosa.

Source: Walsh, N.G.; Lander, N.S. (1999). Olearia. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Andre Messina, 2020-01-02
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Asterales
family Asteraceae
genus Olearia
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Olearia lirata in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Olearia lirata in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Goldfields 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
Wilsons Promontory present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native
Otway Ranges present native
Strzelecki Ranges present native
Monaro Tablelands present native
Highlands-Far East present native
Victorian Alps present native
Snowy Mountains present native

State distribution

Distribution map
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory