Dead finish occurs throughout Fowlers Gap Station, often
in the upper reaches of alluvial drainage channels and on free-draining
colluvial footslopes of the quartzite ridges.
Dead finish is a many-branched prickly shrub 2-3 m or
more tall. It takes its name from the fact that it is the last thing grazing
animals will eat during a drought, because it's so prickly!
Bark: rough at base but grey and smooth on the upper branches.
Leaves: mostly in clusters of 2-5 on branches, leaves (phyllodes,
actually) are spiny with long sharp points and are 4-angled due to raised
Flowers: are golden and globular, either single or in clusters
of 2-5 growing on glabrous stalks from the
bases of leaf clusters.
Fruit: forms typical wattle-type seed pods that may be linear,
curved or twisted, constricted between the seeds rather like green beans.
Source: Frank Kutsche and Brendan Lay (2003). Field guide to
the plants of outback South Australia. Department of Water, Land and
Biodiversity Conservation, South Australia, ISBN 0 7590 1052 8.
Phillip Moore (2005). A guide to plants of inland Australia. Reed
New Holland, ISBN 1 876334 86 X.
Photos: Ian Roach