Scientific Name:
Hectorella caespitosa Hook.f., Handb. New Zealand Fl. 27 (1864)
  • Lyallia caespitosa (Hook.f.) B.L.Nyananyo & V.H.Heywood, Taxon 36: 641 (1987)
  • = Hectorella elongata Buchanan, Trans. & Proc. New Zealand Inst. 16: 395 (1883 [1884])

Perennial dwarf shrub forming cushion 2–4 cm. deep. Branches fleshy, close-set, rooted below, ascending at tips, ending in flat lfy rosettes 10–15 mm. across. Lvs simple, exstipulate, not opp. but in close spiral, sessile, slightly sheathing at base, 5–8 mm. long, subulate, glab., almost fleshy, entire. Many fls produced simultaneously in one rosette, each terminal on a short axillary lateral bearing two stem lvs. Fls white, 7–8 mm. diam.; "prophylls" 2 mm. long, very broadly oblong with apiculus; per. segs united at very base, spathulate, apiculate; stamens with broad filaments reaching to top of per.; style simple, bearing two hastate stigma lobes that reach halfway up per.; ovary ovoid, 2 mm. long, style 1·3 mm., ovules 5. Fr. projecting beyond the persistent prophylls, globose, c. 3 mm. diam., surmounted by apiculus formed from persistent and hardened style base (stigma lobes often long-lasting but not hardened); pericarp smooth, almost fleshy, its substance slightly mucilaginous, without clearly defined valves, ind., the seeds escaping only as the wall disintegrates. Seeds us. < 5, c. 1·5 mm. diam., slightly flattened but rounded, without keel, black and shining.

[From: Allan (1961) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 1.]

Indigenous (Endemic)

Flowering: Jan.–Feb.; Fruiting: Apr.–May.

Buchanan, J. 1884 ("1883"): Notes on new Species of Plants. Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 16: 394–396.
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Barkla J.W.; Courtney, S.P.; Champion, P.D.; Perrie, L.R.; Beadel, S.N.; Ford, K.A.; Breitwieser, I.; Schönberger, I.; Hindmarsh-Walls, R.; Heenan, P.B.; Ladley, K. 2018: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2017. New Zealand Threat Classification Series. No. 22. [Not Threatened]
de Lange, P.J.; Rolfe, J.R.; Champion, P.D.; Courtney, S.P.; Heenan, P.B.; Barkla, J.W.; Cameron, E.K.; Norton, D.A.; Hitchmough, R.A. 2013: Conservation status of New Zealand indigenous vascular plants, 2012. New Zealand Threat Classification Series 3. Department of Conservation, Wellington. [Not Threatened]
Hooker, J.D. 1864: Handbook of the New Zealand Flora: a systematic description of the native plants of New Zealand and the Chatham, Kermadec's, Lord Auckland's, Campbell's and Macquarie's Islands. Part I. Reeve, London.
Nyananyo, B.L.; Heywood, V. H. 1987: A new combination in Lyallia (Portulacaceae). Taxon 36: 640–641.