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Species profile—Aponogeton bullosus


Plantae (plants) → Equisetopsida (land plants) → AponogetonaceaeAponogeton bullosus

Species details

Plantae (plants)
Equisetopsida (land plants)
Scientific name
Aponogeton bullosus H.Bruggen
WildNet taxon ID
Alternate name(s)
North Queenlsland lace
Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NCA) status
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC) status
Conservation significant
Wetland status
Wetland Indicator Species
Pest status
Aponogeton bullosus is a rooted, submerged, perennial aquatic plant (i.e. it reproduces more than once and lives for more than one year). Tubers up to 2cm long take root in the sand on the rocky dark stream bed. Leaf clusters emerge from the top of the tuber and are submersed. The leaves are green, linear to lance-shaped, narrow, semi-transparent, have prominent leaf veins, are strongly bullate (crinkled and blistered) and measure 7-50cm long by 0.5-2.5cm wide.
The flower stems are 8-30cm long and produce yellow, cone-shaped flower spikes up to 5cm long which mostly remain submersed. Fruits are elongated, have a short beaked top, and are 5-6mm long and 3-4mm wide. The clusters of fruit are typically quite short and conical, with usually all fruit developed.
The distinguishing characteristic of this species is the extremely blistered swellings on the leaves. This species retains the bract enclosing a flower spike longer than any other Australian species of Aponogeton. (Hellquist 1998; Stephens & Downing 2002; DEWHA 2008)
Aponogeton bullosus in a fully aquatic plant, growing on granite sand in cool rapidly flowing freshwater rivers and mountain streams. The species grows in both sunny and shady positions. (Hellquist 1998; DEWHA 2008)
Flowering and fruiting occurs between June and October. Flowers may emerge above the water surface for a short time for pollination and fall below the surface to develop fruit. When the flowers do not emerge they still produce fruit. (Hellquist 1998)
Threatening processes
Subjected to excessive collection and now only one population remains. The species is short lived and difficult to maintain in cultivation, thus demand for replacement plants is maintained.
Management documents
Conservation and management of protected plants in trade in Queensland 1995-1998. Department of Environment.
Contributors: Weslawa Misiak 18/09/1998; Kathy Stephen, Mellisa Mayhew 27/01/2009
Aston, H.I. (1973). Aquatic Plants of Australia. Melbourne University Press, Victoria. 368 pp.
Bruggen, H.W.E. van (1969). Revision of the genus Aponogeton (Aponogetonaceae): III. The species of Australia. Blumea 17: 121-137.
Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (2008). Aponogeton bullosus in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Canberra. Accessed 23/09/2008.
Hellquist, C.B. & Jacobs, S.W.L. (1998). Aponogetonaceae of Australia, with descriptions of six new taxa. Telopea 8(1): 13.
Herbrecs (2008). Aponogeton bullosus, in BriMapper version 2.12. Queensland Herbarium. Accessed 23/09/2008.
Stephens, K.M. & Dowling, R.M. (2002). Wetland Plants of Queensland: A Field Guide. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.
Profile author
Kathy Stephens (27/01/2009)

Other resources

Data source

This profile data is sourced from the QLD Wildlife Data API using the Get species by ID function used under CC-By 4.0.

This information is sourced from the WildNet database managed by the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.

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Last updated
8 March 2022