Ornithogalum arabicum L.

Lesser Cape Lily

Sp. Pl. 307 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Plants tufted, bulbous, to c.70 cm high. Roots fibrous. Leaves linear, flat or concave, to c. 80 cm long, 3 cm wide, withering before flowering time. Inflorescence erect, initially corymbose, typically elongated at maturity. Flowers 8–25; bracts lanceolate; lower flowering pedicels to 6 cm long, not much longer than the upper, fruiting pedicels erect, to 8 cm long; perianth segments 20–30 mm, not widely spreading, white; stamens c. one-third as long as perianth segments; ovary dark purplish. Capsule cylindric. Flowers spring.

*GipP, *WaP, *Wim. Also naturalised in WA, SA, NSW. Native to the Mediterranean region and occasionally cultivated. Known in Victoria from an 1894 collection at MEL labelled simply 'Wimmera', and a 1991 specimen from a cereal crop near Kaniva.

Source: Conran, J.G. (1994). Liliaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2020-03-12
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Lilianae
order Asparagales
family Asparagaceae
genus Ornithogalum
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Ornithogalum arabicum in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Ornithogalum arabicum in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Wimmera present introduced
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Warrnambool Plain present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales