Blepharis subvolubilis C.B.Clarke

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Blepharis subvolubilis

Photo: Darrel Plowes
Banket, base of the Great Dyke.

Blepharis subvolubilis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Mpinge Pass, Great Dyke

Blepharis subvolubilis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Mpinge Pass, Great Dyke

Blepharis subvolubilis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Mpinge Pass, Great Dyke

Blepharis subvolubilis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Mpinge Pass, Great Dyke

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

Synonyms: Blepharis acuminata Oberm.
Blepharis angusta sensu Obermeyer in part, non (Nees) T. Anderson
Blepharis inaequalis sensu C.B. Clarke in part, non sensu stricto
Blepharis saxatilis Pberm.
Common names:
Frequency: Locally very common
Status: Native
Erect to procumbent or trailing perennial herb. Stems up to 50 cm long. Leaves in whorls of 4 with one often much larger than the other three, linear-lanceolate to elliptic, up to 11.5 cm long, glossy, hairless or appressed hairy below, roughly hairy above; margin with up to 20 triangular teeth on each side. Spikes 4-12-flowered, 2-8.5 cm long. Bracts glossy, green to brownish, sometimes partly white between the veins or with white veins and edges, subhairless or appressed hairy, 5-7 veined from the base, more or less broadly obovate-elliptic, 23 45 mm long, spine-tip recurved, 8-18 mm long with 4-9 narrow spines on each side of the margin. Corolla bright blue to purple, rarely white, 24-37 mm long; lip broadly obovate, 13-28 mm wide, finely to densely hairy below, central lobe wider than long, truncate or emarginate and narrowing towards the base.
Notes: In Zimbabwe most flowers are white and often occur on chrome and serpentine soils (see photo).
Derivation of specific name: subvolubilis: somewhat twining, enveloping
Habitat: In Brachystegia woodland and bush, often on degraded or disturbed soils.
Altitude range: (metres) Up to 1450 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Zimbabwe, Botswana, South Africa.
Zimbabwe distribution: N,C,W/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: Saturday 22 December 2012

Da Silva, M.C., Izidine, S. & Amude, A.B. (2004). A preliminary checklist of the vascular plants of Mozambique. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 30 Sabonet, Pretoria Page 18.

Kirby, G. (2013). Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Struik Nature, Cape Town South Africa Page 301. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 17. as Blepharis angusta and B. inaequalis

Vollesen, K. (2000). Blepharis (Acanthaceae). A taxonomic revision. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Pages 58 - 63. (Includes a picture).

Vollesen, K. (2013). Acanthaceae (Part 1) Flora Zambesiaca 8(5) Pages 65 - 67. (Includes a picture).


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Flora of Botswana: Blepharis subvolubilis

External websites:

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

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: Blepharis subvolubilis., retrieved 7 December 2016

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