Bossiaea decumbens F.Muell.

Fragm. 1: 9 (1858)

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Endemic

Establishment means:Native

Prostrate to procumbent shrub to 30 cm high, sometimes mat-forming; stems terete, with sparse appressed or spreading hairs. Leaves alternate, shortly petiolate, elliptic to ovate or rotund, 2–5 mm long, 1.5–4 mm wide, often cordate at base, discolorous; lower surface glabrescent, venation often conspicuous; margins recurved; stipules narrow-triangular, greatly exceeding petiole. Flower solitary, 8–10 mm long, usually aggregated at ends of short lateral branches; pedicels 10–25 mm long; bracts to 1.5 mm long; bracteoles 1–2 mm long, inserted above middle of pedicel, persistent; calyx 3–6 mm long, tube much shorter than upper lobes, upper lobes 2.5–3.5 mm long, very much larger than lower; standard slightly longer than wings and keel, suffused red externally, yellow internally; keel more than 6 mm long; ovary ± sessile, glabrous except ciliate margins, 6–10-ovuled; style 3–6 mm long. Pods narrow-oblong, 2–3 cm long; stipe not or scarcely exceeding calyx. Flowers Sep.–Feb.

CVU, EGL, EGU, Gold, HNF, HSF, VAlp, VRiv, VVP. Occurs in a variety of habitats in central and eastern Victoria up to 1400 m altitude, including dry sclerophyll forest, grassland, open woodland and heathland.

Bossiaea decumbens has been segregated from B. buxifolia, the latter now thought to be largely restricted in eastern Victoria on ranges east of Omeo. Bossiaea decumbens closely resembles B. buxifolia in almost all aspects, with B. decumbens distinguished by the larger calyx, with upper lobes distinctly longer than lower lobes, and the longer keel petals and style. Vegetatively, leaves of B. decumbens tend to have less strongly recurved margins, and are sometimes less hairy than those of B. buxifolia.

Created by: Andre Messina, 2016-04-15
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-03-06
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Fabales
family Fabaceae
genus Bossiaea
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Bossiaea decumbens in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Bossiaea decumbens in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native
Highlands-Southern Fall present native
Highlands-Northern Fall present native
Victorian Alps present native

State distribution

Distribution map