Scientific Name:
Atriplex L., Sp. Pl. 1052 (1753)
  • = Atriplex sect. Theleophyton Hook.f.
  • Theleophyton (Hook.f.) Moq. in de Candolle, Prodr. [A. P. de Candolle] 13, 115 (1849)
  • = Obione Gaertn. (1791)
Type Taxon:
Vernacular Name(s):
orache; Saltbush

Monoecious or dioecious, annual herbs or small shrubs, glabrous or farinose. Stems green, often striped reddish or white.  Lvs generally alternate, flat, toothed or lobed, often hastate, sometimes entire;  upper lvs much smaller.  Fls in glomerules;  glomerules aggregated in panicles, dense spikes or sometimes solitary.  ♂ fls:  bracteoles 0;  perianth segments (3)–5;  stamens (3)–5. ♀ fls:  bracteoles 2, accrescent and enclosing fr., free or somewhat fused, entire or dentate, often lobed near base, often tuberculate or with appendages on bracts, sometimes spongy inside;  perianth usually 0, if present then segments 5.  Ovary superior;  stigmas 2.  Fr. pericarp membranous, often easily detached.  Seeds sometimes dimorphic, usually vertical, rarely horizontal;  testa usually smooth;  radicle often protruding.

[From:  Webb et al. (1988) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 4.]

Indigenous (Non-endemic)
Number of species in New Zealand within Atriplex L.
Indigenous (Endemic)2
Indigenous (Non-endemic)3
Exotic: Fully Naturalised5
de Candolle, A.P. 1849: Prodromus Systematis Naturalis Regni Vegetabilis. Vol. 13. Treuttel et Würtz, Paris.
Linnaeus, C. 1753: Species Plantarum. Impensis Laurentii Salvii, Stockholm.
Mabberley, D.J. 2008: Mabberley's plant book, a portable dictionary of plants, their classification and uses. Edition 3. Cambridge University Press.