#CreatureFeature – Swainsona formosa (Sturt’s Desert Pea)

The Sturt’s desert pea is one of Australia’s best-known wildflowers and was named after English botanist Isaac Swainson.

The desert pea is famous for its distinctive blood-red, leaf-like flowers, each with a bulbous red or black center. It has grey-green leaves which are arranged spirally down the stems. 

Bill & Mark Bell, 2011

The flowers are around 9 cm in length and grow in clusters of half a dozen on tall vertical stems. Some stems can grow up to 2 meters tall. The plant flowers from spring to summer, particularly after rain. When flowering, the desert pear produces a legume, about 5 cm long, each of which yield 50 or more kidney-shaped seeds at maturity. 

The Sturt’s desert pea is native to the arid regions of central and north-western Australia. Its range extends into all mainland Australian states apart from Victoria. 

References: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swainsona_formosa 

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2 comments

I used to grow these when I lived up north in Port Hedland, they certainly spring to life after a cyclone or storm out on the station country.
Thanks Paige for promotion.

I planted some seed here in Geraldton using smoke water before planting. The ones that germinated I put in pots with 1/2 gravel mixed with sand.
They flowered beautifully and I have collected some seed to try again.
Leone Marsh.

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