font settings and languages

Font Size: Large | Normal | Small
Font Face: Verdana | Geneva | Georgia

Conostylis aculeata

(Prickly Conostylis)

Common Names

[ Back to top ]

Common Names in English:

Prickly Conostylis


[ Back to top ]

Family Haemodoraceae

Herbs, perennial or rarely annual , rhizomatous , often stoloniferous ; sap often red or orange. Stems simple . Leaves mostly basal, distichous, irislike; blade linear , sheathing proximally, folded lengthwise distally, folded portions becoming fused. Inflorescences terminal , cymose or corymbose , many-branched, many-flowered, loose or condensed. Flowers: tepals persistent , 6 in 2 whorls of 3, distinct above level of insertion on ovary, ± equal, aestivation valvate ; stamens 3 or 6; filaments elongate ; anthers basifixed , 2-locular, often basally sagittate , dehiscence introrse by longitudinal slits; pistil 1, compound , 3-carpellate; ovary inferior or half-inferior to nearly superior, 3-locular with axile placentae, or 1-locular distally with parietal placentae and 3-locular proximally with axile placentae; ovules 1, 3-6, or numerous in each locule, arranged in vertical rows or around margin of peltate placenta, orthotropous or anatropous ; style 1, undivided, elongate; stigma 1, terminal, very small. Fruits capsular , dehiscence loculicidal. Seeds discoid and peltate, or elongate and variously curved ; endosperm present.

Genera ca. 14, species ca. 80 (2 genera, 2 species in the flora ) : e North America, Mexico, Central America, n South America, s Africa, New Guinea, Australia.

The two genera of Haemodoraceae found in North America are very different from each other. Lachnanthes belongs to tribe Haemodoreae and is morphologically similar to Dilatris P. J. Bergius of South Africa and Haemodorum Smith of Oceania. The relationships of Lophiola are more obscure and are discussed more fully in the references cited below and under that genus.[1]

Physical Description

Habit: Evergreen .

Flowers: Bloom Period: March. • Flower Color: yellow


Size: 6-12" tall.


Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 329 meters (0 to 1,079 feet).[2]


[ Back to top ]


Sunlight: Sun Exposure: Full Sun .


[ Back to top ]


Publishing author : R.Br. Publication : Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holland. 300. 1810 [27 Mar 1810]

Similar Species

[ Back to top ]

Members of the genus Conostylis

ZipcodeZoo has pages for 5 species, subspecies, varieties, forms, and cultivars in this genus:

C. aculeata (Prickly Conostylis) · C. canteriata (Cotton Tops) · C. robusta (Golden Conostylis) · C. setigera setigera (Bristly Conostylis) · C. setosa (White Cottonheads)

More Info

[ Back to top ]

Further Reading

[ Back to top ]


[ Back to top ]


Data Sources

Accessed through GBIF Data Portal December 02, 2007:



  1. Kenneth R. Robertson "Haemodoraceae". in Flora of North America Vol. 26 Page 16, 22, 23, 47, 48, 49, 51, 67. Oxford University Press. Online at [back]
  2. Mean = 132.280 meters (433.990 feet), Standard Deviation = 137.380 based on 82 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]
Last Revised: 2/1/2015