This species has been confused with Barbarea grayi, a species growing in Victoria and New South Wales. Until 1982, with the publication of volume 8 of the Flora of Australia, the two species were treated as one[
Barbarea australis is an erect, annual to biennial or short-lived perennial plant growing 50 - 100cm tall[
The plant has edible and medicinal properties but, because of its rarity, should not really be harvested.
Barbarea australis is endemic to Tasmania where it is known to grow only along ten river systems. Total population size is estimated to be about 900 mature individuals, though numbers can fluctuate widely from year to year. It is likely that Barbarea australis has always been relatively locally uncommon. It was presumed extinct until rediscovered in the
1980s, having not been collected since the 1830s. The plant is classified as 'Endangered' in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(2013)[
Australia - Tasmania
Found along floodprone rocky river systems, growing in shallow alluvial silt deposited on rock slabs or rocky ledges, or between large cobbles on sites frequently disturbed by fluvial processes[
]. Wettish land in the montane and sub-alpine zones.
|Pollinators||Flies, bees, Beetles, Self
Barbarea australis is native to montane regions of Tasmania, where it experiences cold winters with frost and snow.
Succeeds in sun or shade in a moist well-drained soil[
The plant is a prolific seed producer and after disturbance such as flooding, hundreds of seedlings can emerge in resultant gaps in winter and early spring. However, few generally survive to maturity due to browsing (mainly by native species) and disturbance by natural flood events[
The plant can sometimes reproduce vegetatively with a new plant growing from the base of an existing plant[
Young leaves - raw or cooked[
]. A pungent, peppery flavour[
The leaves are antiscorbutic[
Seed - sow in situ in early spring to early summer.