Bolbitis gemmifera (Hieron.) C. Chr.

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Bolbitis gemmifera

Photo: Petra Ballings

Bolbitis gemmifera

Photo: Petra Ballings

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Synonyms: Acrostichum punctatum L.f. var. angolense Welw. ex Carruth.
Leptochilus gemmifer Hieron.
Common names:
Frequency: Rare
Rhizome widely creeping, c. 7 mm thick; rhizome scales dark brown, apex tapering to a point, fimbriate, clathrate, c. 3 mm long. Fronds spaced apart, dimorphous. Sterile frond: stipe 10-45 cm long, with few scattered scales, denser towards the base; lamina imparipinnate, gemmiferous below apical pinnule, 20-45 × 10-30 cm, ovate in outline; pinnae 8-10 pairs, elliptic - lanceolate, base slightly asymmitrical, apex pointed, margins wavy to coarsely crenate, glabrous. Fertile frond: stipe 20-50cm long, lamina pinnate, 15-35 × 7-15 cm; sporangia covering the lower surface of the pinnae.
Notes: Differs from B. heudelotii by having gemmiferous fronds that bear a clearly separated terminal pinna. This species is not aquatic.
Derivation of specific name: gemmifera: the species produces gemmae (little plantlets) near the top of the frond.
Habitat: Deeply shaded forest floor in tall semi-deciduous Newtonia buchananii/ Millettia stuhlmannii forest.
Altitude range: (metres) 440 m (approx)
Worldwide distribution: Tropical Africa, also Madagascar
Zimbabwe distribution: E
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status: Lower Risk - near threatened
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. Pages 294 - 296. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 9.

Golding, J.S. (ed.) (2002). Zimbabwe Plant Red Data List. Southern African Plant Red Data Lists. SABONET 14 Page 174.

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 7.

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Page 147.

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Page 115.

Other sources of information about Bolbitis gemmifera:

Our websites:

Flora of Zambia: Bolbitis gemmifera

External websites:

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

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: Bolbitis gemmifera., retrieved 10 December 2023

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