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Tasmania home to first alpine sword-sedge
Date:11/15/2013

cross Australia. It is of particular ecological interest because its fruits are removed by ants after falling. The authors are also working with colleagues from University of Sydney to investigate the taxonomic value of aromatic resins, which also appear to have therapeutic value.

Most species of Lepidosperma occur in open forests, woodlands and heath, and some in swamps, but L. monticola is essentially restricted to alpine vegetation. All known populations of this new species occur above 700 m altitude. Individual plants are often inconspicuous, growing in the crevices of rock outcrops. Other individuals form attractive rounded clumps up to about 20 cm in diameter intermingled with mosses and lichens.

Lepidosperma monticola is somewhat similar to a previously named species, L. inops, which grows at lower elevations. The two species can be readily distinguished by traits such as fruit morphology. Ongoing work by the authors and collaborators is likely to uncover additional undescribed species of Lepidosperma.


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Contact: Mr. George T. Plunkett
gplunket@myune.edu.au
Pensoft Publishers
Source:Eurekalert  

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