Etymology: Named in honour of Western Australian botanist Alexander Segger George (1939–) with the Greek anthos (= a flower).
The flavonoids of Georgeantha and Ecdeiocolea monostachya are clearly distinct (Williams et al. 1997), G. hexandra containing quercetin and galactose which are absent from E. monostachya, whereas both genera contain isorhamnetin.
Distinguished from Ecdeiocolea by the culms consisting of several internodes; inflorescence of 2 or 3 spikelets; trimerous flowers with tepals and stamens 6; trilocular ovary with 3 styles and fruit a capsule. Culms with 1–3 compact ovoid spikes, with zones of female and male flowers alternating along the spike axis; glumes rigid.
Herbs, monoecious, perennial, rhizomatous. Rhizomes villous, largely covered by almost glabrous scales. Cataphylls scarious. Culms terete, striate, Sheaths: basal sheaths persistent, striate, lamina reduced; lower culm sheaths caducous, the nodes swollen and prominent. Inflorescence of two or few spikelets. Spikelet: axis zigzag, with long pale branched hairs; glumes all subtending flowers, female flowers at the spikelet base, flower sex alternating once or twice towards the apex depending on spikelet size. Flowers: male and female flowers similar; tepals 6, outer tepals keeled, the adaxial outer tepal and inner tepals ± flat. Male flowers: stamens 6, free; anthers 2-locular, 4-sporangiate, versatile, latrorse, dehiscing by two longitudinal slits; pistillode present. Female flowers: staminodes minute; ovary 3-locular; styles 3, free, stout, wholly stigmatic, densely covered adaxially with long stigmatic branches. Fruit a loculicidal capsule. Seeds patterned with convex, strongly lobed cells. Culm anatomy: with grooves extending to the base of the chlorenchyma, overarched by enlarged epidermal cells; stomates and accompanying sclereids at base of the groove; ridges with a central sclerenchyma rib.
Illustrations:B.G. Briggs & L.A.S. Johnson, Telopea 7(4): 309–310, figs 1, 2 (1998); H.P. Linder et al. in K. Kubitzki (ed.), The Families and Genera of Flowering Plants IV: 195 (1998); K.A. Meney & J.S.Pate, Australian Rushes 296–297 (1999).
Briggs, B.G. & Johnson, L.A.S. (1998). Georgeantha hexandra, a new genus and species of Ecdeiocoleaceae (Poales) from Western Australia. Telopea 7(4): 307–312.
Briggs, B.G. & Tinker, A. (2014). Synchronised monoecy in Ecdeiocoleaceae (Poales) in Western Australia. Australian Journal of Botany 62(5): 391–402.
Linder, H.P., Briggs, B.G. & Johnson, L.A.S. (1998). Ecdeiocoleaceae, in Kubitzki, K. (ed.), The Families and Genera of Flowering Plants IV: 195–197. (Springer-Verlag: Berlin).
Linder, H.P., Briggs, B.G. & Johnson, L.A.S. (1998) Ecdeiocoleaceae, in K. Kubitzki (ed.), The Families and Genera of Flowering Plants IV: 195–197.
Meney, K.A. & Pate, J.S. (eds) (1999). Australian Rushes. Biology, Identification and Conservation of Restionaceae and Allied Families. (University of Western Australia Press: Nedlands).
Meney, K.A., Pate, J.S. & Hickman, E.J. (1999). Morphological and anatomical descriptions of Restionaceae and allied families and their distribution, in Meney, K.A. & Pate, J.S. (eds), Australian Rushes. Biology, Identification and Conservation of Restionaceae and Allied Families, pp. 161–461. (University of Western Australia Press: Nedlands).
Rudall, P.J., Stuppy, W., Cunniff, J., Kellogg, E.A. & Briggs, B.G. (2005). Evolution of reproductive structures in grasses (Poaceae) inferred by sister-group comparison with their putative closest living relatives, Ecdeiocoleaceae. American Journal of Botany 92(9): 1432–1443.
Western Australian Herbarium (1998–). FloraBase—the Western Australian Flora. (Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions). https://florabase.dpaw.wa.gov.au/
Williams, C.A., Harborne, J.B., Greenham, J., Briggs, B.G. & Johnson, L.A.S. (1997). Flavonoid evidence and the classification of the Anarthriaceae within the Poales. Phytochemistry 45(6): 1189–1196.