Selaginella caffrorum (Milde) Hieron.

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Synonyms: Selaginella capensis Hieron.
Selaginella rupestris (L.) Spring var. incurva A.Braun ex Kuhn
Common names:
Status: Native
Plants moss-like, widely creeping and branched, forming extensive mats. Stems c. 0.5 mm in diameter, covered with small, flattened leaves; leaves on branches dense and overlapping. Leaves monomorphic, small, up to 3 × 0.4 mm, narrowly lanceolate in outline, apex tapering with a very short, translucent, bristle point, margin entire or sparsely ciliate, midrib prominently grooved. Plants bright olive green when wet or alive, pale coppery brown when dry or dead. Sporophylls arranged in 4 ranks, 2 mm long, ovate, acuminate.
Notes: Differs from S. dregei which is more bluish green when wet and silvery grey when dry, it has a longer apical leaf point (a third to a quarter of the length of the blade). S.caffrorum has the branch tips bending inwards when dry, other Selaginellaceae do not share this character.
Derivation of specific name: caffrorum: from Kaffraria, referring to South Africa.
Habitat: Vertical cliff faces in grassy montane areas, in full sun or shade.
Altitude range: (metres)
Worldwide distribution: South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe (single collection) into tropical and East Africa, and Sudan.
Zimbabwe distribution: S
Growth form(s): Lithophyte, terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Burrows, J.E. (1990). Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Page 25. (Includes a picture).

Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011). Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide Struik Nature Pages 84 - 85. (Includes a picture).

Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983). The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Page 144. (Includes a picture).

Other sources of information about Selaginella caffrorum:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Selaginella caffrorum

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-23

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2023). Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Selaginella caffrorum., retrieved 29 November 2023

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