Craterostigma plantagineum Hochst.

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Craterostigma plantagineum

Photo: Darrel Plowes

Craterostigma plantagineum

Photo: Bart Wursten
By main Harare to Bulawayo Rd

Craterostigma plantagineum

Photo: Bart Wursten
By main Harare to Bulawayo Rd

Craterostigma plantagineum

Photo: Bart Wursten
By main Harare to Bulawayo Rd

Craterostigma plantagineum

Photo: Bart Wursten
By main Harare to Bulawayo Rd

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

Synonyms: Torenia plantaginea (Hochst.) Benth.
Common names: Blue carpet (English) Mubatabata (Tonga: Zimbabwe) Umabuyasibonze (Ndebele)
Frequency: Locally common
Status: Native
Small perennial herb, usually less than 10 cm. Leaves in a basal rosette, variable from broadly ovate to lanceolate, hairless above, hairy beneath and on the margins; parallel veins prominent beneath. Inflorescence c. 8 cm tall, racemose. Flowers purple and white, 2-lipped; lower lip 3-lobed with the mid-lobe very broad.
Notes: This plant can dry out and stay dormant for long periods and spring back to life after some rain (Hornby & Hornby 1964)
Derivation of specific name: plantagineum: leaves like a Plantago
Habitat: In shallow soil overlying rock and in mopane woodland.
Altitude range: (metres) 900 - 2200 m
Flowering time:Oct - May
Worldwide distribution: Angola, Botswana, Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Limpopo, Mpumalanga, South Africa; also in Yemen and India.
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,E,S
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Wednesday 23 January 2008

Fabian, A. & Germishuizen, G. (1997). Wild Flowers of Northern South Africa. Fernwood Press, Vlaeburg. Pages 366 - 367. (Includes a picture).

Fischer, E. (1992). Systematik der afrikanischen Lindernieae (Scrophulariaceae) Tropische und subtropische Pflanzenwelt 81 Pages 87 - 94. (Includes a picture).

Ghazanfar, S.A., Hepper, F.N. & Philcox, D. (2008). Scrophulariaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 61 - 62.

Heath, A. & Heath, R. (2009). Field Guide to the Plants of Northern Botswana including the Okavango Delta Kew Publishing Page 58. (Includes a picture).

Hepper, F.N. (1990). Craterostigma Flora Zambesiaca 8(2) Page 56.

Hornby, H.E. & Hornby, R.M (1964). The reaction of Craterostigma plantagineum Hochst. to desiccation Kirkia 4 Pages 217 - 220. (Includes a picture).

Kirby, G. (2013). Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Struik Nature, Cape Town South Africa Page 325. (Includes a picture).

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 77.

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 97.

Pickering, H. & Roe, E. (2009). Wild Flowers of the Victoria Falls Area Helen Pickering, London Page 106. (Includes a picture).

Plowes, D.C.H. & Drummond, R.B. (1990). Wild Flowers of Zimbabwe. Revised edition. Longman, Zimbabwe. No. 109, plate 147

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 103.


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Flora of Botswana: Craterostigma plantagineum
Flora of Zambia: Craterostigma plantagineum

External websites:

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

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: Craterostigma plantagineum., retrieved 27 May 2016

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