Fruiting bodies. Australian Plant Image Index, photo: Murray Fagg, Millewa State Forest, NSW

Young fruiting bodies. Photo: Don Wood, Scotia Sanctuary, NSW

Immature plant. Photo: Don Wood, Scotia Sanctuary, NSW

Mature plant. Photo: Don Wood, Scotia Sanctuary, NSW

Common Name

Buckbush; Rolypoly; Soft Rolypoly; Prickly Saltwort




Annual or biennial forb to 1m tall. Spine-tipped leaves. Succulent stems and leaves when young.  Leaves alternating up the stems, leaf bases continuing down the stems, hairless or rough, with a sharp point.  Early leaves to 3cm long, 2-3mm wide, cylindrical. Flower leaves 0.5-1cm long, similar to the foliage leaves or much broader at the base.  Flowers usually solitary at the bases of the leaves,sometimes in open or condensed spikes towards the ends of the branches.  Fruiting bodies hairless, with a horizontal wing consisting of five lobes, pale green to cream or straw-coloured. 

Description and photos (as Salsola kali var. kali) in G.M. Cunningham, WE Mulham, PL Milthorpe and J H Leigh (1981 and later printings) Plants of Western New South Wales page 279.  Varieties of this species are no longer recognised.

PlantNet description (as Salsola kali)