Cenchrus clandestinus (Hochst. ex Chiov.) Morrone

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Cenchrus clandestinus

Photo: Bart Wursten
Ndundu Lodge, Vumba

Cenchrus clandestinus

Photo: Bart Wursten
Ndundu Lodge, Vumba

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Synonyms: Pennisetum clandestinum Hochst. ex Chiov.
Common names: Kikuyu grass (English)
Description: A dense, mat-forming grass, growing from both stolons and rhizomes. It has no clearly visible inflorescences, only the white filaments and feathery stigmas may be visible (photo right).
Notes: Widely used as one of the most popular lawn grasses. It is known as a naturalised escape, particularly in high rainfall areas in the East of the country.
Derivation of specific name: clandestinus: clandestine, referring to the invisible inflorescences.
Flowering time:Aug - Apr
Worldwide distribution: Native to East and Central Africa.
Growth form(s):
Insects associated with this species: Melanitis leda helena (Food plant)
Gorgopis libania (Food plant)
Cnaphalocrocis trapezalis (Larval foodplant)
Aeropetes tulbaghia (Larval foodplant)
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Image last updated: Friday 8 September 2006

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 358.

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 43.

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 28.

Clayton, W.D. (1989). Poaceae Flora Zambesiaca 10(3) Page 179.

Jackson, G. & Wiehe, P.O. (1958). An Annotated Check List of Nyasaland Grasses The Government Printer, Zomba, Nyasaland Page 69.

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 108. As Pennisetum clandestinum

Other sources of information about Cenchrus clandestinus:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Cenchrus clandestinus
Flora of Malawi: Cenchrus clandestinus
Flora of Zimbabwe: Cenchrus clandestinus

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Cenchrus clandestinus
African Plant Database: Cenchrus clandestinus
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Cenchrus clandestinus
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Cenchrus clandestinus
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Cenchrus clandestinus
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Cenchrus clandestinus
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Cenchrus clandestinus
JSTOR Plant Science: Cenchrus clandestinus
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Cenchrus clandestinus
Plants of the World Online: Cenchrus clandestinus
Tropicos: Cenchrus clandestinus
Wikipedia: Cenchrus clandestinus

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Cultivated Plants: Species information: Cenchrus clandestinus.
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/cult/species.php?species_id=107800, retrieved 19 May 2024

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