Grevillea obtusiflora subsp. obtusiflora and subsp. fecunda Recovery Plan

NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, September 2001
ISBN 0 731 36281 0

1 Introduction

The initial collection of Grevillea obtusiflora was by Alan Cunningham in 1822 in the "Brushy hills N. of Bathurst". Robert Brown first described the taxon in 1830 in his supplement to the 'Flora of New Holland'. G. obtusiflora was not recorded again until 1977, when Bob Coveny of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney collected a specimen in Clandulla State Forest (SF) near Kandos in NSW. Makinson (1997) considers that Clandulla State Forest is possibly not its type locality following examination of Cunningham's journal entries and maps.

McGillivray (1993) recognised G. obtusiflora as consisting of three subspecies, two of which were new. The new taxa were subspecies kedumbensis and granulifera, with the Clandulla taxon retaining the subspecies name obtusiflora. These three subspecies are allopatric, that is, their distributions do not overlap. This, and floristic differences, were used by Olde and Marriott (1994) to justify the elevation of the subspecies to species (G. obtusiflora, G. kedumbensis and G. granulifera).

Makinson (1997) described a new subspecies of G. obtusiflora; subsp. fecunda. This subspecies was discovered 15 km away from the Clandulla sub-population of Grevillea obtusiflora subsp. obtusiflora in 1995 by Johnson and Miller. G. obtusiflora subsp. fecunda is distinguished principally by possessing narrower and more revolute leaves, narrower flowers, shorter pistils, and by differences in distribution. The subspecies name, fecunda, refers to the copious quantities of seed observed on the plants. In contrast, G. obtusiflora subsp. obtusiflora is apparently sterile. Despite regular flowering, no fruit or seed has been found.

G. obtusiflora subsp. obtusiflora (Figure 1) is a low, root suckering shrub found in and adjacent to Clandulla State Forest. It is located at approximately 720 metres altitude in the Sydney Basin bioregion.

Grevillea obtusiflora subsp. fecunda (Figure 2) is a low, root suckering shrub found near Capertee in NSW. It is located at approximately 570 metres altitude in the Sydney Basin bioregion.

Based on the present distribution and the differences in fruit production, Makinson (1997) considers that the two subspecies may be reproductively isolated. Surveys of potential habitat did not locate further sites; however, it is probable that the range of both taxons is more extensive than currently known.

In this recovery plan the term Grevillea obtusiflora is used to describe the subspecies collectively.