Comesperma polygaloides F.Muell.

Small Milkwort

Trans. Philos. Soc. Victoria 1: 7 (1854) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Native

Threat status:Victoria: vulnerable (v); listed in Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988

Slender glabrous subshrub to 25(–40) cm high; stems simple or few-branched, smooth, arising annually from an elongate rhizome, leafy throughout or bare toward base. Leaves c. oblong to narrow-obovate, 6–12(–20) mm long, 1–3 mm wide, thickish, glaucous. Flowers pink to mauve, in a terminal raceme; pedicels c. 2 mm long; outer sepals ovate, c. 2 mm long, the abaxial pair united to above midway, wings obovate, 5–6 mm long, keel yellow-tipped, slightly shorter than wings, hooded and deeply 2-pleated at apex; upper petals yellow-tipped, oblong, shortly exceeding keel and united with it to just below midway. Capsule obovate or cuneaet, long-tapered to base, 6–10 mm long; seeds ovoid, c. 3 mm long, evenly covered with silky hairs c. 5 mm long. Flowers Nov.–Jan.

Brid, CVU, DunT, GipP, Glep, Gold, GGr, LoM, MuM, OtP, VRiv, VVP, WaP, Wim. Also WA, SA. Occasional on heavier soils (clays, alluvium) supporting grassland and grassy woodland communities in central and south-western areas.

Source: Walsh, N.G. (1999). Polygalaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 4, Cornaceae to Asteraceae. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2018-12-27
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Fabales
family Polygalaceae
genus Comesperma
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Comesperma polygaloides in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Comesperma polygaloides in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Lowan Mallee present native
Murray Mallee present native
Wimmera present native
Glenelg Plain present native
Bridgewater present native
Victorian Volcanic Plain present native
Victorian Riverina present native
Gippsland Plain present native
Otway Plain present native
Warrnambool Plain present native
Goldfields present native
Central Victorian Uplands present native
Greater Grampians present native
Dundas Tablelands present native

State distribution

Distribution map
Western Australia
South Australia