Daviesia, commonly known as bitter-peas,[2] is a genus of about 130 species of flowering plants in the family Fabaceae, and is endemic to Australia. Plants in the genus Daviesia are shrubs or small trees with leaves modified as phyllodes or reduced to scales. The flowers are arranged singly or in groups, usually in leaf axils, the sepals joined at the base with five teeth, the petals usually yellowish with reddish markings and the fruit a pod.

Bitter peas
Daviesia cordata gnangarra 01.JPG
Daviesia cordata
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Genus: Daviesia

See list

    • Daviesia sect. Aphyllae (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Aphyllaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Calamaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Calamiformes (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Decurraria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Decurrentes (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Fascicularia Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Fasciculatae (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Involucraria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Involucratae (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Racemaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Racemosae (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Teretiaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Teretifoliae (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Umbellaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia sect. Umbellata (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Verticales (Benth.) Kuntze
    • Daviesia sect. Verticaria Kuntze orth. var.
    • Daviesia ser. Aphyllae Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Calamiformes Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Decurrentes Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Fasciculatae Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Involucratae Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Racemosae Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Teretifoliae (Benth.) Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Umbellatae Benth.
    • Daviesia ser. Verticales Benth.
    • Daviesia § Teretifoliae Benth.


Plants in the genus Daviesia are shrubs or small trees with their leaves modified as phyllodes that are often sharply-pointed, or have leaves reduced to scales with the stems modified as cladodes. The flowers are usually arranged in leaf axils, either singly or in clusters or racemes with bracts sometimes present on the peduncles, pedicels or flowering stems. The sepals are joined at the base to form a bell-shaped tube with five teeth, the two upper teeth usually wider and the petals are usually yellowish with reddish markings, the standard petal more or less round with a notch at the top and often shorter than the wings and keel. The fruit is a more or less flattened pod containing one or two seeds, each with an aril on the end.[2][3][4][5]

The roots of many Daviesia species have a mode of secondary thickening in which successive arch-like cambia arise outside the roots of the previous season, creating rope-like structures on the roots.[6][7] Like other genera in their family, Daviesia species have nitrogen-fixing bacteria contained in root nodules.[8]


The genus Daviesia was first formally described in 1798 by James Edward Smith in Transactions of the Linnean Society of London.[9][10] The genus is named in honour of Hugh Davies, a Welsh botanist.[11]


Species of Daviesia are found in all states and mainland territories of Australia, but the majority occur in Western Australia.[3][12]

Species listEdit

The following is a list of Daviesia species accepted by the Australian Plant Census as of October 2021:[13]


  1. ^ a b "Daviesia". Australian Plant Census. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  2. ^ a b Crisp, Michael D. "Daviesia". Royal Botanic Garden Sydney. Retrieved 5 December 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Daviesia". FloraBase. Western Australian Government Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.
  4. ^ Jeanes, Jeff A. "Daviesia". Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  5. ^ "Daviesia". State Herbarium of South Australia. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  6. ^ Crisp, M.D. (1995). "Contributions towards a revision of Daviesia (Fabaceae: Mirbelieae). III.* A synopsis of the genus". Australian Systematic Botany. 8 (6): 1155. doi:10.1071/SB9951155. ISSN 1030-1887.
  7. ^ Michael D. Crisp; Lindy Cayzer; Gregory T. Chandler; Lyn G. Cook (24 March 2017). "A monograph of Daviesia (Mirbelieae, Faboideae, Fabaceae)". Phytotaxa. 300 (1): 1–308. doi:10.11646/PHYTOTAXA.300.1.1. ISSN 1179-3155. Wikidata Q33106109.
  8. ^ Mullins, Effie (1989). "Daviesia mimosoides". Growing Native Plants. Australian National Herbarium. Retrieved 4 May 2015.
  9. ^ "Daviesia". Australian Plant Name Index. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  10. ^ Smith, James E. (1798). "The Characters of Twenty New Genera of Plants". Transactions of the Linnean Society of London. 4: 220. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  11. ^ Sharr, Francis Aubi; George, Alex (2019). Western Australian Plant Names and Their Meanings (3rd ed.). Kardinya, WA: Four Gables Press. p. 74. ISBN 9780958034180.
  12. ^ "Daviesia". Northern Territory Government. Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  13. ^ "Daviesia". Australian Plant Census. Retrieved 17 September 2021.