Tragopogon porrifolius L.


Sp. Pl. 789 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Biennial herb 30–125 cm high, glabrous, somewhat glaucous. Leaves grass-like, the basal ones tufted, mostly 5–30 cm long, 1–2 cm wide, acute; cauline leaves similar, subamplexicaul. Capitula 1–few, opening in the morning and closing during the day; peduncles inflated below capitula; involucral bracts c. 8, 2.5–6 cm long. Ligules 15–25 mm long, not exceeding involucre, lilac to deep violet. Outer cypselas 20–35 mm long, curved, ribbed, muricate, brown, with beak and body c. equal; inner cypselas smaller, straight, slightly ribbed; pappus 15–25 mm long, brownish. Flowers mostly Oct.–Jan.

*CVU, *EGU, *GipP, *Gold, *GGr, *HNF, *HSF, *MonT, *MuF, *MuM, *OtP, *VRiv, *VVP, *Wim. Also naturalised WA, SA, Qld, NSW, ACT, Tas. Native to the Mediterranean region. An occasional but widespread weed of roadsides, pasture, wasteland and other disturbed sites.

The fleshy boiled or baked taproot is eaten and considered by some to taste like oysters (hence the common name).

Source: Jeanes, J.A. (1999). Asteraceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-08-28
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Asteranae
order Asterales
family Asteraceae
genus Tragopogon
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Tragopogon porrifolius in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Tragopogon porrifolius in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Murray Mallee present naturalised
Wimmera present naturalised
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Victorian Riverina present naturalised
Murray Fans present introduced
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present introduced
Goldfields present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
Greater Grampians present naturalised
East Gippsland Uplands present introduced
Highlands-Southern Fall present introduced
Highlands-Northern Fall present introduced
Monaro Tablelands present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory