Sowerbaea

Sowerbaea

Sowerbaea is a small genus of perennial herbs which are native to Australia.

The genus is placed in the family Laxmanniaceae, it has also been included in Anthericaceae, Liliaceae and Lomandraceae.

Some species may have annual above ground growth, and its habit is erect or climbing. Leaves are alternate. The flowers are aggregated to form an inflorescence, this may be white or lilac and purple shades of pink.

Species include:

The genus was first described by James Smith in 1798. The first species to be described, Sowerbaea juncea Andrews (1800), was in the Botanists Repository, with a 1798 illustration of a specimen growing in England. The seeds of the species were cultivated to England, sometime shortly after the founding of the colony in New South Wales. Smith also described the species in the same year as Andrews, the nomination was superfluous.

The next species to be described was Sowerbaea laxiflora Lindl. (1839), this was found in Western Australia. Three of the five species are found in that state.

The genus is named after a botanical illustrator, James Sowerby.

References

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