Lasiopetalum ferrugineum Sm.

Rusty Velvet-bush

in Andrews, Bot. Repos. 2: t. 208 (1802) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Shrub to c. 1 m high. Leaves narrowly oblong or lanceolate, 2–19 cm long, 0.5–4 cm wide, becoming glabrous above, conspicuously white -to rusty-hairy beneath; base sometimes broadly cordate; margins usually slightly recurved; petioles 2–10 mm long. Inflorescence 5–10-flowered, crowded; bracteoles 3, 3–5 mm long. Calyx segments 4–10 mm long, whitish, both surfaces stellate-hairy; petals red-brown, less than 1 mm long; anthers red-brown, c. 1.5 mm long; style glabrous except at base. Capsule c. 4 mm diam., densely hairy. Flowers Oct.–Nov.

EGL, EGU. Also Qld, NSW. Rare in Victoria and confined to rocky areas in the far east (e.g. Mt Kaye, lower Genoa River gorge).

A highly variable species with two varieties generally recognised on the basis of leaf shape. Leaves range from ovate-cordate, c. 2–4 cm wide at base, with ± entire margins to narrow-linear or lanceolate, c. 6–10 mm wide, with a truncate or attenuate base, and sinuate or shallowly lobed margins. At these extremes, plants can be placed in var. cordatum and var. ferrugineum respectively. Most material collected in New South Wales largely conforms to these two forms. However, plants collected in Victoria are somewhat intermediate. A collection from south of Mt Kaye has ovate-cordate leaves that are c. 2 cm wide and are readily attributable to var. cordatum, while other collections along the Genoa River have broad-lanceolate leaves that are 8–15 mm wide with a truncate or cordate base and occasionally lobed margins, and are not convincingly placed in either variety. These plants are tentatively placed in var. ferrugineum, but may just be small-leaved specimens responding to local environmental conditions rather than a distinct taxon.   

Source: Short, P.S. (1996). Sterculiaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 3, Dicotyledons Winteraceae to Myrtaceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-04-08
Distribution map


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Lasiopetalum ferrugineum in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Lasiopetalum ferrugineum in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
East Gippsland Lowlands present native
East Gippsland Uplands present native

State distribution

Distribution map
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory