Cereus jamacaru DC.

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Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

Cereus jamacaru

Photo: Bart Wursten
By the lodges, Lake Kyle Recreational Park

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

Synonyms:
Common names: Queen of the night (English)
Description: Potentially tree-sized succulent up to 7 m high with thick, erect, succulent branches arising from a short woody trunk. Branches blue-green; ribs set with clusters of 5-10 sharp spines. Leaves absent. Flowers arising from the ribs, large and showy, up to 25 cm long, white, opening at night. Fruit a large succulent berry, c. 6 cm long, pink to red when ripe.
Notes: When not flowering or fruiting this species could be mistaken for the indigenous Euphorbia ingens. However, Cereus jamacaru has spines in clusters of 5-10 while Euphorbia ingens has small shields bearing short paired spines. Also the stems of C. jamacaru are much more blue-green and do not exude milky sap.

Although not recorded in Maroyi (2006), it is in Zimbabwe well-known as a cultivated ornamental in urban gardens. It definitly also has the potential to become invasive in woodland areas. This is clearly shown around the restcamp at Lake Kyle Recreational Park (see images above), where some specimens were originally planted in rock gardens around the cottages. Monkeys, baboons and larger birds which eat the fruit have spread the seeds into the surrounding woodland and a growing number of plants can now be found thriving there. Some are already of fertile age, which will only accelerate the spread of this species.

It is a declared weed in South Africa, where it is naturalised and invasive in the bushveld areas of Limpopo, Mpumalanga, Gauteng and North-west (Leistner, 2000; Henderson, 2001; Bromilow, 2010).
Derivation of specific name:
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Native to northeastern Brazil in South America.
Growth form(s): Tree.
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Image last updated: Monday 24 September 2012
Literature:

Bromilow, C. (1995). Problem Plants of South Africa. Briza Publications, Arcadia. Page 373. (Includes a picture).

Henderson, L. (2001). Alien weeds and invasive plants Plant Protection Research Institute Handbook No. 12. Plant Protection Research Institute, Agricultural Research Council, South Africa. Page 84. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 42.

Other sources of information about Cereus jamacaru:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Cereus jamacaru
Flora of Zimbabwe: Cereus jamacaru

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Cereus jamacaru
African Plant Database: Cereus jamacaru
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Cereus jamacaru
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Cereus jamacaru
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Cereus jamacaru
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Cereus jamacaru
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Cereus jamacaru
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network): Cereus jamacaru
iNaturalist: Cereus jamacaru
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Cereus jamacaru
JSTOR Plant Science: Cereus jamacaru
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Cereus jamacaru
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Cereus jamacaru
Plants of the World Online: Cereus jamacaru
The Plant List (version 1.1): Cereus jamacaru
Tropicos: Cereus jamacaru
Wikipedia: Cereus jamacaru


Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-19

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2019). Flora of Zimbabwe: Cultivated Plants: Species information: Cereus jamacaru.
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/cult/species.php?species_id=169160, retrieved 14 December 2019

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