Spergularia marina (L.) Griseb.

Lesser Sea-spurrey

Spic. Fl. Rumel. 1: 213 (1843) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Annual or rarely perennial; taproot slender to slightly fleshy; stems slender, diffuse, 5–35 cm long. Leaves linear, obtuse to mucronulate, hardly fasciculate, fleshy, 5–50 mm long, 0.6–1.5 mm wide, glabrous or glandular-hairy; stipules obtuse to scarely acuminate, (2–)2.5–3(–4) mm long, connate for c. one-third to half their length, not silvery. Inflorescence dense or occasionally lax, dichasial, upper branches becoming monochasial and appearing racemose; pedicels reflexed or not, filiform, c. equalling to longer than sepals, glabrous or glandular-hairy. Flowers 4–8 mm diam.; sepals (1.5–)2.5–4(–5) mm long, green or purplish with basal dots usually prominently blackish-red, with sparse to dense glandular hairs (0.15–)0.2–0.3(–0.4) mm long; petals sometimes reduced or 0, usually shorter than sepals, rose-purple, white at base; stamens (0–)2–5(–10), staminodes 0–3. Capsules narrow-ovoid, usually shortly exceeding sepals; seeds with thickened rim, (0.35–)0.6–0.8 (–0.9) mm long, smooth to densely translucent-papillose, orange-brown to deep red-brown, usually unwinged, or unwinged and winged in same capsule, the wing margin erose-denticulate. Flowers most of year.

CVU, DunT, GipP, Gold, MuM, OtP, RobP, VRiv, VVP, WaP, Wim, *Brid, *HNF, *LoM, *WPro. All States. New Zealand. Mostly on maritime cliffs, margins of saltmarshes and inland saline wetlands.

Like Spergularia tasmanica, this plant is widespread in natural, saline wetland habitats and may be reasonably considered native.

Source: Adams, L.G.; West, J.G. (1996). Spergularia. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 3, Dicotyledons Winteraceae to Myrtaceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-06-25
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Caryophyllanae
genus Spergularia
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Spergularia marina in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Spergularia marina in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Lowan Mallee present introduced
Murray Mallee present native
Wimmera present native
Bridgewater present introduced
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Robinvale Plains present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Dundas Tablelands present native
Wilsons Promontory present introduced
Highlands-Northern Fall present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
Northern Territory
South Australia
New South Wales