Stapelia gigantea N.E. Br.

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Stapelia gigantea

Photo: Bart Wursten
Shashe Wilderness Camp, Shashe River

Stapelia gigantea

Photo: Bart Wursten
Shashe Wilderness Camp, Shashe River

Stapelia gigantea

Photo: Bart Wursten
Shashe Wilderness Camp, Shashe River

Stapelia gigantea

Photo: Bart Wursten
Shashe Wilderness Camp, Shashe River

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Species details: Click on each item to see an explanation of that item (Note: opens a new window)

Synonyms: Stapelia marlothii N.E. Br.
Stapelia nobilis N.E. Br. ex Hook.
Stapelia youngii N.E. Br.
Common names:
Status: Native
Somewhat straggling succulent perennial. Stems 4-angled, more or less erect, up to 25 cm tall, pubescent, not prominently tuberculate. Leaves 2-3 mm, pubescent, acute with obscure stipular glands. Flowers opening in succession on a short, densely pubescent peduncle from the base of the stem. Corolla flat and wheel-shaped 12-40 cm in diameter, deeply lobed, limb flat or somewhat cup-shaped. Lobes ovate-acuminate with 3 prominent main veins on the outside; inside buff to reddish, finely wrinkled with transverse red-brown to purple lines, weakly hairy; margins ciliate with longer hairs. Corona dark purple, outer lobes erect-spreading, oblong to subspathulate, 5-6 × 1.5-2.5 mm; inner lobes, 8-12 × 1-2 mm, sometimes concealing the anthers.
Derivation of specific name: gigantea: gigantic, huge, referring to the very large flowers
Habitat: In a variety of habitats, often in rocky areas on wooded hillsides
Altitude range: (metres)
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, eastern South Africa, Swaziland, southern Tanzania, Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,E,S
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status: Data deficient
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Tuesday 6 May 2008

Bandeira, S., Bolnick, D. & Barbosa, F. (2007). Wild Flowers of Southern Mozambique Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Maputo, Mozambique Page 119. (Includes a picture).

Baumann, G. (2005). Photographic Guide to Wildflowers of Malawi Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi Pages 104 - 105. (Includes a picture).

Kirby, G. (2013). Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Struik Nature, Cape Town South Africa Page 371. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 29.


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Other sources of information about Stapelia gigantea:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Stapelia gigantea
Flora of Malawi: Stapelia gigantea
Flora of Mozambique: Stapelia gigantea
Flora of Zambia: Stapelia gigantea
Flora of Zimbabwe: cultivated Stapelia gigantea

External websites:

African Plant Database: Stapelia gigantea
Biodiversity Explorer (Biodiversity of southern Africa): Stapelia gigantea
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Stapelia gigantea
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Stapelia gigantea
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Stapelia gigantea
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network) taxonomy for plants report for Stapelia gigantea
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Stapelia gigantea
Ispot Southern Africa : Stapelia gigantea
JSTOR Plant Science: Stapelia gigantea
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Stapelia gigantea
Tropicos: Stapelia gigantea
West African Plants database: Stapelia gigantea

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-16

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2016). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Stapelia gigantea., retrieved 29 July 2016

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