Girish Mahajan (Editor)


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Kingdom  Plantae
Subfamily  Conostyloideae
Higher classification  Haemodoraceae
Order  Commelinales
Family  Haemodoraceae
Scientific name  Anigozanthos
Rank  Genus
Anigozanthos Anigozanthos 39Bush Ballad39 Kangaroo Paw Gardening With Angus
Lower classifications  Anigozanthos flavidus, Anigozanthos manglesii

Anigozanthos bush gems minis kangaroo paws

Anigozanthos is a small genus of Australian plants in the Bloodwort family Haemodoraceae. The 11 species and several subspecies are commonly known as kangaroo paw and catspaw depending on the shape of their flowers. A further species, previously identified as Anigozanthos fuliginosus and commonly known as the black kangaroo paw, has been transferred to its own monotypic genus and is now known as Macropidia fuliginosa.


Anigozanthos Australian Seed Anigozanthos Kangaroo Paw

The genus was first named by Jacques Labillardière in his work, Relation du Voyage à la Recherche de la Pérouse, issued in 1800. The French botanist collected and described the type species, Anigozanthus rufus, during the d'Entrecasteaux expedition's visit to Southwest Australia in 1792. In recent years a number of numerous hybrids and cultivars have been developed. Kangaroo paws are much in demand as house plants and as cut flowers.

Anigozanthos Anigozanthos Kangaroo Paws suntuffnatives

The red-and-green kangaroo paw is the floral emblem of Western Australia.

Anigozanthos hybrids kangaroo paw


Anigozanthos Australian Seed Anigozanthos Kangaroo Paw

These perennials are endemic to dry sandy, siliceous areas of southwest Australia, but they occur as well in a variety of other environments and soil types. They are grown commercially in Australia, the United States, Japan and Israel.

Anigozanthos httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu

The plant grows from short, underground, horizontal rhizomes. The length and the character of these may vary between the species: some are fleshy, others are fragile. The sap in the root system allows the plants to survive extreme dry spells. In summer, a number of species die back to the rhizome, growing back in autumn.

Anigozanthos Anigozanthos 39Dwarf Delight39 Growing Native Plants

The plants have a basal rosette of long green to greyish-green leaves. The leaves of some species are hairy. From the heart of this roset merge long leafless stalks, which can reach 2 m, ending in a raceme of flowers. The size and height of these stalks, which can be clothed in coloured hairs, varies between the species.

Anigozanthos Anigozanthos 39Bush Ranger39 PP6478 at San Marcos Growers

The tuberous flower buds are also covered with coloured hairs, giving it a velvety aspect. These long furry hairs also determine the colour of the flower, which may range from almost black to yellow, orange and red. Some species are even dichromatic (as Anigozanthos manglesii). The tubular form of the flower bud resembles a kangaroo paw, hence its name. The flower tip spreads fanlike into six petals. Full-grown plants can have up to ten flowers at the end of each stalk.


Anigozanthos Anigozanthos 39Harmony39 at San Marcos Growers

The diversity of the genus is classified by 11 species, several of their subspecies are recognised by FloraBase as rare or endangered taxa.

  • Anigozanthos bicolor Endl. (little kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos bicolor ssp. bicolor (two-coloured kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos bicolor ssp. decrescens
  • Anigozanthos bicolor ssp. exstans
  • Anigozanthos bicolor ssp. minor
  • Anigozanthos flavidus DC. (tall kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos gabrielae Domin (dwarf kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos humilis (cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos humilis ssp. chrysanthus (Mogumber cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos humilis ssp. grandis (tall cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos kalbarriensis (Kalbarri cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos manglesii D.Don (red-and-green kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos manglesii ssp. manglesii
  • Anigozanthos manglesii ssp. quadrans
  • Anigozanthos onycis (branched cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos preissii (Albany cat's paw)
  • Anigozanthos pulcherrimus Hook. (golden kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos rufus Labill. (red kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos viridis Endl. (green kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos viridis subsp. terraspectans Hopper (dwarf green kangaroo paw)
  • Anigozanthos viridis subsp. metallica (metallic green kangaroo paw)
  • Commercial hybrids

    The popularity of Anigozanthos, as a garden plant or commercially produced cut-flower, has led to the development of cultivars. The Australian Cultivar Registration Authority lists twenty seven registered names and descriptions of cultivars derived from the genus. A larger number of patents for these, accepted or granted 'varieties', are recorded in the Plant breeders' rights database.


    Anigozanthos Wikipedia