Alice Springs Flora •

Alice Springs FloraAnnual Yellowtop Acacia ligulata Apple Bush Bougainvillea Burdekin Plum Carob Tree (Ceratonia siliqa) Cattle Bush Desert Cotton (Aerva javanica) Desert Oak Eremophila Wildberry Feijoa sellowiana Flannel Cudweed Fork-leaf Corkwood Ghost Gum Golden Everlasting Kurrajong Lemon-flowered Gum MacDonnell’s Desert Fuchsia Native Bluebell Native Tomato Needlewood Olive Tree Perennial Yellow Top Rat’s Tail River Red Gum Inland River Red Gum Rosy Dock Round-leaved Mallee Scurvy Grass Silky Eremophila Stemodia viscosa Striped Mintbush Sturt’s Desert Pea Sturt’s Desert Rose Tangled Leschenaultia Tar Vine Weeping Bottlebrush White Cedar Yellow Billybutton Yellow-keeled Swainsona Yellow Oleander

With a number of common names including Scurvy Weed, Scurvy Grass or Wandering Jew, species Commelina ensifolia grow as a prostrate herb. The flowers are a bright deep blue in colour. The outer tepals (sepals) are translucent and dimorphic, whilst the inner tepals (petals) dimorphic are predominantly deep blue in colour and white or translucent. One of the petals is much smaller than the other giving the appearance of two petals.

These were photographed in a verge plantings with other plants along the Todd River in Alice Springs.

Scurvy Grass (Commelina ensifolia), Alice Springs NT
Scurvy Grass (Commelina ensifolia), Alice Springs NT

The fleshy leaves and stems are covered in pale hairs. The flower inflorescence emerges from a cup-like bract, that is also cover in pale hairs. The fruit of the plant is enclosed in a large bract.

Scurvy Grass (Commelina ensifolia), Alice Springs NT
Scurvy Grass (Commelina ensifolia), Alice Springs NT

They are often seen growing at Ormiston Gorge & Pound > Ormiston Gorge Flora


  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Clade: Tracheophytes
  • Clade: Angiosperms
  • Clade: Monocots
  • Clade: Commelinids
  • Order: Commelinales
  • Family: Commelinaceae
  • Genus: Commelina
  • Species: C. ensifolia
  • Binomial name: Commelina ensifolia

Alice Springs FloraAnnual Yellowtop Acacia ligulata Apple Bush Bougainvillea Burdekin Plum Carob Tree (Ceratonia siliqa) Cattle Bush Desert Cotton (Aerva javanica) Desert Oak Eremophila Wildberry Feijoa sellowiana Flannel Cudweed Fork-leaf Corkwood Ghost Gum Golden Everlasting Kurrajong Lemon-flowered Gum MacDonnell’s Desert Fuchsia Native Bluebell Native Tomato Needlewood Olive Tree Perennial Yellow Top Rat’s Tail River Red Gum Inland River Red Gum Rosy Dock Round-leaved Mallee Scurvy Grass Silky Eremophila Stemodia viscosa Striped Mintbush Sturt’s Desert Pea Sturt’s Desert Rose Tangled Leschenaultia Tar Vine Weeping Bottlebrush White Cedar Yellow Billybutton Yellow-keeled Swainsona Yellow Oleander

Alice Springs FaunaAlice Springs Bees Alice Springs Beetles Alice Springs Birds Alice Springs Butterflies & Moths Alice Springs Insects Alice Springs Dragonflies Alice Springs Orthoptera Alice Springs Reptiles Alice Springs Spiders Alice Springs Wasps Alice Springs Water Scorpion Black-footed Rock Wallaby Euro Garden Mantis