Polygala vulgaris L.

Common Milkwort

Sp. Pl. 702 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Naturalised

Ascending to weakly erect, glabrous or glabrescent, perennial rhizomatous herb to c. 40 cm high. Leaves lanceolate, 8–30 mm long, 2–6 mm wide. Flowers mauve-blue, in terminal racemes 2–12 cm long; bracts lanceolate, c. 2 mm long, bracteoles ovate, c. 1 mm long, purplish, soon deciduous; pedicels 1–2 mm long; sepals free, the upper and lower ones narrow-ovate, 2–3 mm long, wings obovate, 5–7 mm long, 2–4.5 mm wide in fruit, 3–5-nerved with connecting lateral nerves; corolla c. 7 mm long, shortly exceeding sepals at anthesis, keel appendages c. 2 mm long, lateral petals entire, slightly longer than keel. Capsule obcordate, subequal to but usually slightly broader than sepals; seed silky, 2–2.5 mm long, with aril c. 1 mm long. Flowers Sep.–Feb.

*HSF. Also naturalised Tas., New Zealand. Native to western Europe. Apparently localized in the Gembrook and Olinda areas, where growing on fertile mountain loams on roadsides.

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: Neville Walsh, 2018-01-10
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Rosanae
order Fabales
family Polygalaceae
genus Polygala
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <http://avh.chah.org.au>. Find Polygala vulgaris in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Polygala vulgaris in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Highlands-Southern Fall present naturalised

State distribution

Distribution map