Asparagus

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Introduced

Erect, often climbing or scrambling, much-branched, rhizomatous perennial herbs. Roots tuberous or fibrous. Aerial stems annual, rarely perennial. Leaves reduced to bracts subtending a number of axillary cladodes. Inflorescence an axillary raceme, or flowers solitary or clustered in bract axils. Flowers bisexual or unisexual, petals and sepals free, similar; pedicels articulated; stamens 6, anthers basifixed; ovary superior; style filiform, stigma capitate to trifid. Fruit a berry; seeds ovoid to sub-globose, shiny, black.

About 120 species, predominantly from Africa, Europe and Asia; 12 speices in Australia (1 native, 11 introduced), 6 species naturalised in Victoria. Several species are cultivated either as ornamentals or in the case of A. officinalis for its edible shoots.

Source: Conran, J.G. (1994). Liliaceae. In: Walsh, N.G.; Entwisle, T.J. (eds), Flora of Victoria Vol. 2, Ferns and Allied Plants, Conifers and Monocotyledons. Inkata Press, Melbourne.
Updated by: Andre Messina, 2014-09-23
 
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