Stenanthera conostephioides Sond.
Common Name: Flame Heath
Astroloma conostephioides is an erect or spreading, evergreen shrub with prickly leaves; it can grow 30 - 100cm tall, occasionally to 200cm[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food. Although difficult to cultivated, the plant is sometimes grown as an ornamental.
Australia - Victoria, South Australia.
Heathland and open forests in sandy soils[
|Cultivation Status||Ornamental, Wild
Astroloma conostephioides is a plant of fairly dry areas in southern Australia, where it experiences cool winters with some light frosts.
Requires a sunny position, succeeding in most soils that are mildly acidic to very acidic.
Fruit - raw[
]. Sweet and sticky[
]. The succulent red fruits are around 7mm in diameter. The fruits are completely enclosed in reddish-brown papery scales[
Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame. The seed has a hard coat and some form of scarification is necessary or the seed can take up to 5 years to germinate. Two or three periods each of 4 - 6 weeks cold stratification can reduce the time taken to germinate[
]. As soon as they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. When large enough, plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer.
Cuttings of firm young tip growths[
]. It is very difficult to obtain suitable wood[
] and the cuttings are slow to root[