Weed Identification

Australia > > African weed-orchid

African weed-orchid

Disa bracteata

Alternative Name(s): Monadenia bracteata, South African Orchid, Monadenia.

Family: Orchidaceae.

Form: Herb

Origin: Native of South Africa.

Flowers/Seedhead: In spring.

Description: Orchid to 75 cm high with annual above ground growth from a perennial bulb. Leaves in a rosette in early spring. Seeds dust-like.

Distinguishing features: Distinguished by spike of up to 50 small flowers that are brown, pink and white with a yellow tongue-like labellum; grows from tubers.

Dispersal: Spread by wind-dispersed seed and remerges each year from a perennial tuber.

Flowering spike
Strathewen, Victoria
photo. J. Jeanes

Notes: The species is self-pollinating. It forms dense colonies and replaces native ground flora where it occurs in Western Australia, South Australia and Victoria. First herbarium specimens were collected in Western Australia in 1944, in South Australia in 1988 and in Victoria in 1994. Populations of this orchid have increased rapidly where the species has established.


    Environmental Weeds: A Field Guide for SE Australia. K. Blood, 2001, page 173.

Dark pink to brownish flowers with a yellow tongue-like labellum
photo. J. Jeanes

This weed has been included in the WEEDeck field guide as card H67

More information about WEEDeck is available from Sainty & Associates Pty. Ltd.


Australia > > African weed-orchid


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