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Lepidosperma monticola is distinguished from Lepidosperma inops in having a minutely colliculate fruit apex, its longest culms being greater than half the length of the leaves, and the angle between the outermost leaves of the ramets being 20° or greater.
AUSTRALIA: Tasmania: Mt Field National Park, Tarn Shelf, c. 100 m N of Dobson Hut, 26 April 2012, G.T. Plunkett 99, J.J. Bruhl & C.J. Prychid; holotype: HO; isotype: AD, BOL, BRI, BRIP, CANB, CHR, GENT, K, MEL, MO, NE, NSW, NY, P, PERTH, PRE. (Figure 5). Short-rhizomatous perennial, forming dense clumps. Leaves markedly distichous, up to 8 cm long, innovations forming flat fans (ramets) with angle of 20–27° between outer leaves; lamina well-developed, isobilateral, shallowly biconvex, ± rigid, striate, to 65 mm long, 1–1.5 mm wide, margins glabrous or scabrous with prickle hairs antrorse; sheaths 10–25 mm long, pale yellow-brown to mid-brown, often with tinge of red-pink, not resinous, margin glabrous; ligule subulate to acute, glabrous. Culms shallowly biconvex or rhombic in cross-section, 30–55 mm high, 0.8–1.4 mm wide, 1/2–2/3 length of longest leaves, pale yellow-brown at base, margins glabrous or scabrous with prickle hairs antrorse. Photosynthetic pathway ‘maximum cell distance count’ >1, C3.Inflorescence obovate in outline, a reduced panicle of 1–3 spikelets, 7–12 mm long, 2.5–5(–10) mm wide; involucral bract equal to or up to twice as long as the inflorescence, 9–24.5 mm long, sheath pink-red to dark red-brown at least proximally; rachis not flexous or reflexed. Spikelets 5–6.5 mm long, 1–2 mm diameter, with single bisexual flower; prophylls acute or emarginate, puberulous. Glumes 4, all of similar length; lowest 2 sterile, mucronate, outer face scabrous, with raised midrib; fertile glumes c. 6 mm long, apex subulate, midrib indistinct, outer face puberulous, margins glabrous. Perianth scales 6(–8), acute to acuminate, glabrous, 0.8–1.6 mm long. Anthers c. 1.4 mm long excluding apiculus; apiculus 0.4 mm long, glabrous. Nut elliptical in outline, pale green to mid brown depending on maturity, with 3 discolorous and raised ribs, c. 3 mm long, 1.4–1.7 mm diameter; style cap truncate, minutely colliculate.
Distribution and habitat
Restricted to the South West, Central Highlands, West Coast and Mt Field regions of Tasmania; in alpine heath, herbfields, open forest and moorland at altitudes greater than about 700 m (Figure 6). At Tarn Shelf (Figure 4) and Mt Sprent this species grows in skeletal humus over or amongst rock outcrops, in epacrid–Proteaceae–Myrtaceae heath or Gymnoschoenus sphaerocephalus sedgeland.
On the basis of our current knowledge, this species would not warrant listing under either the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List (IUCN 2012), Australian Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 or Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995. All populations known from herbarium material occur within National Parks, Regional Reserves or Conservation Areas.
Derivation of epithet
Named from the Latin mons,montis (mountain) and -cola (dweller), referring to the distribution of this species on the mountains of Central and South Western Tasmania.
Selected specimens examined
AUSTRALIA. Tasmania: Central Highlands: 3 km SE of Pyramid Mountain, 1100 m, 14 Feb. 1983, A. Moscal 1776 (HO); Cradle plateau, 880 m, 7 Mar. 1949, W.M. Curtis s.n. (HO); High Dome, 24 Feb. 1994, J.B. Kirkpatrick s.n. (HO); Sticht Range, 20 km S of Tullah, 920 m, 16 Apr. 1990, P.A. Collier 4678 (HO). Mt Field: Shelf above University Hut, Lake Dobson, 1120 m, 1 Jan. 1949, W.M. Curtis s.n. (HO). South West: Elliot Range, summit, 900 m, 15 Jan. 1985, S.J. Jarman s.n. (HO, MEL, NSW); Mt Rugby, 1120 m, 16 Feb. 1978, S.J. Jarman s.n. (HO). West Coast: Mt Darwin, 1100 m, 8 Mar 1974, D.A. Ratkowsky s.n. (HO); Mt Dundas, summit, 860 m, 1 Mar. 1894, L. Rodway s.n. (HO); Range extending S to SE from Mt Curly, 5 Feb. 1985, S.J. Jarman 263 (HO).
Flowers November to February. Fruits December to April.
- Plunkett, G; Wilson, K; Bruhl, J; 2013: Sedges in the mist: A new species of Lepidosperma (Cyperaceae, Schoeneae) from the mountains of Tasmania PhytoKeys, 28: 19-59. doi
- IUCN (2012) IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria: Version 3.1. Second edition. Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge.