Oxalis purpurea L.

Large-flower Wood-sorrel

Sp. Pl. 433 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Herb with stems hardly exserted; bulbs ovoid, 1–3 cm long, pointed, tunics blackish-brown, rigid, gummy; bulbils formed on rhizome. Leaves crowded at apex of rhizome, 3-foliolate; leaflets sessile, broad-obovate to rhombic, 5–45 mm long, 5–50 mm wide, rounded or sometimes emarginate, green and glabrous above, often purplish below with many translucent dots and streaks that dry black, pubescent or with hairs confined to nerves, margins ciliate; petioles 1–17 cm long, usually densely villous; stipules membranous, to c. 4 mm long, abruptly tapering into petiole. Inflorescences basal, 1-flowered; peduncles shorter than or scarcely exceeding leaves, usually pilose. Sepals lanceolate, 5–8 mm long, striate with translucent lines, ciliate, calli absent. Petals 10–40 mm long, pink to purple or sometimes white, yellow at base. Capsules not developed in Australia. Flowers mainly Apr.–Nov.

*CVU, *GipP, *Glep, *Gold, *GGr, *HNF, *HSF, *NIS, *OtP, *VRiv, *VVP, *Wim. Also naturalised WA, SA, Qld, NSW, Tas. Native to South Africa. Often grown as an ornamental, but now a weed of gardens, roadsides, cemeteries and other disturbed areas, as well as some native vegetation such as Themeda triandra plains grassland.

Source: Conn, B.J.; Jeanes, J.A.; Richards, P.G. (1999). Oxalidaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2020-03-25
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Oxalidales
family Oxalidaceae
genus Oxalis
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Oxalis purpurea in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Oxalis purpurea in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Wimmera present naturalised
Glenelg Plain present naturalised
Victorian Volcanic Plain present naturalised
Victorian Riverina present naturalised
Gippsland Plain present naturalised
Otway Plain present naturalised
Goldfields present naturalised
Central Victorian Uplands present naturalised
Greater Grampians present naturalised
Northern Inland Slopes present naturalised
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised
Highlands-Northern Fall present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia
New South Wales