Burchardia rigida Gand.
Reya umbellata (R.Br.) Kuntze
Common Name: Milkmaids
Burchardia umbellata is a herbaceous perennial plant, growing from 10 - 65cm tall from a corm and tuberous roots. One or two basal, grass-like leaves up to 60cm long are produced plus a usually unbranched flowering stem[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food. It is grown as an ornamental in gardens.
Australia - Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Western Australia
Heaths, flats, open forests and low hillsides in all regions[
]. Open forests, woodlands and heath, often in damp or swampy areas, especially in coastal districts[
Burchardia umbellata is found from the temperate regions of tasmania to the subtropics of southern Queensland. It can be grown outdoors in the milder regions of the temperate zone and is known to tolerate occasional temperatures down to at least -7°c in well-drained soils so long as the winter is not cold and wet[
]. The plant can, be grown outdoors in the summer and then be lifted in the autumn and stored in a cool but frost-free place over winter before replanting in early spring[
Requires a moist but well drained soil in a sunny or lightly shaded location[
]. Requires a well-drained sandy peat or a peat and loam mix[
]. Requires plenty of moisture in the growing season from late winter to spring but the plant dies down in the summer and should be kept drier at this time[
Plants also grow very well in a cool greenhouse where corms should be repotted rather loosely in the spring of each year[
Root - raw or cooked[
]. Starchy, but a non-descript flavour[
]. Pleasantly starchy, much like raw potato[
Seed -it does not require pre-treatment[397. We have no other information on this plant but would advise sowing the seed in a warm greenhouse as soon as it is ripe in the summer or sowing the stored seed in a greenhouse in the spring. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter, planting them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.