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Flora of Australia Online

Grevillea brevifolia subsp. polychroma Molyneux & Stajsic, Fl. Australia 17A: 502 (2000)

T: Betts Creek Track, 1.2 km E of Tulloch Ard Rd, 9.5 km E of Mt Murrindal, Vic., 9 Feb. 1980, S.J.Forbes 264 ; holo: MEL.

Grevillea victoriae 'race f' p.p. , and 'Unassigned 3', of D.J.McGillivray & R.O.Makinson, Grevillea 321, 322 (1993). 

Grevillea victoriae , 'race f' [Victorian populations only], R.O.Makinson, Fl. Victoria 3: 852 (1996). 

Regeneration probably from seed only.

Open shrub 1–3 m tall. Leaves 3–5 (–7) cm long, (6–) 10–20 (–30) mm wide, length/width ratio 2.1:1 to 3.6:1; venation of upper surface of leaf obscure to conspicuous. Floral bracts spathulate, widest below tip, 3.2–3.5 mm long, c. 1 mm wide. Pistil 18–22 mm long. Flower colour: perianth red to pale lilac or apricot pink or yellow, rarely creamy white; style similar shades but often different to perianth colour except in the yellow form. 

Occurs in Vic. in the area N of Buchan, from W Tree Falls N to Tulloch Ard and Butchers Ridge, E to Mt Elizabeth, and W to Wentworth R. near Dargo. Grows in open forest and rocky shrub associations. Flowers Oct.–Feb. Map 233.

Vic.: 'Seldom Seen' [property] at southern end of Jones' Rd, S of Wentworth R., N.G.Walsh 142 (MEL); on Rodger R., 2.4 km @ 90º E Rodger R./Snowy R. junction, S.J.Forbes 1777 (MEL); 'W Tree', near Buchan, [Mrs] L.Hodge s.n. , Oct. 1947 (MEL).

The difference in size and shape of the floral bracts given above is based on a very few specimens, and the character is rarely available as the bracts are generally caducous when the floral buds are c. 1 mm long; its diagnostic use requires validation.

Subsp. polychroma is congruent with those populations of McGillivray & Makinson's 'race f' of G. victoriae that lie in Victoria on the catchments of the Buchan and Snowy Rivers, i.e. those mapped as W of 149º longitude (McGillivray & Makinson, Grevillea 322, map 90 (1993)). Note that the 'Seldom Seen' property cited above is near Dargo; this subspecies does not occur at Mt Seldom Seen, which is about 75 km to the NE and is a locality for subsp. brevifolia.

Olde & Marriott (Grevillea Book 3: 225 (1995)), make reference under G. victoriae var. leptoneura to plants from W Tree Ck, Mt Elizabeth and Mt Kaye appearing to constitute a separate taxon; these are congruent with subsp. polychroma as here circumscribed. However, the colour illustration of 'G. victoriae , form from W Tree Falls' (Olde & Marriott, loc. cit. ), is unlikely to be subsp. polychroma. The plant depicted has acute apices to the flower buds, a feature of G. oxyantha ; the apparently pale flower colour shown is not characteristic of that species and may be an artefact. Grevillea oxyantha is not known to occur naturally there. Grevillea enthusiast Leo Hodge (1904–199?) bred grevilleas on his property 'Poorinda' at W Tree; the photo may be of a cultivated plant.

Grevillea brevifolia subsp. polychroma differs from G. victoriae in its smaller and thinner leaves, less conspicuous leaf venation, shorter floral rachises and shorter less regular (often subsecund) unit conflorescences, and possibly in the size and shape of the floral bracts, although floral bracts in G. victoriae are poorly sampled and variable, ranging in shape from subulate to subspathulate and in length from 1–2.5 mm.

Grevillea parvula differs from G. brevifolia subsp polychroma in its consistently tomentose to subvillous branchlets, usually pink-flushed new foliage, strongly concave pollen-presenter, and narrower range of flower colour. Some specimens of G. brevifolia subsp. polychroma approach some populations (Mt Kaye area) of G. parvula very closely in most other features; there may be some intergradation, and the delimitations given here may require adjustment.

Since publication of the Flora of Australia the Australian Plant Census no longer recognises the subspecies. It treats Grevillea brevifolia subsp. polychroma as a synonym of Grevillea polychroma (published since the Flora of Australia treatment).

(R.O.Makinson)

 

Data derived from Flora of Australia Volumes 16 (1995), 17A (2000) and 17B (1999), products of ABRS, ©Commonwealth of Australia