Rourea orientalis Baill.

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Rourea orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Above Mermaids Falls, Aberfoyle

Rourea orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Victoria Falls National Park.

Rourea orientalis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Victoria Falls National Park.

Rourea orientalis

Photo: Riaan Kotze
Hartbees Nek farm, Chipinge.

Rourea orientalis

Photo: Riaan Kotze
Hartbees Nek farm, Chipinge.

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

Synonyms: Byrsocarpus coccineus sensu auct.
Byrsocarpus orientalis (Baill.) Baker
Byrsocarpus tomentosus Schellenb.
Common names: Mudzimamuriro (Shona) Musunzi (Shona) Short-pod (English)
Status: Native
A scrambling shrub or small tree. Leaves imparipinnate with 8-16 pairs of leaflets and a terminal leaflet, bright green above. Leaflets often typically folded downwards along the rhachis (see photos). Flowers in few-flowered axillary sprays, white to yellow, c. 2.5 cm in diameter, showy, lemon-scented, appearing before the new leaves. Fruit an ellipsoid capsule, reddish-brown when ripe, splitting along one side, revealing the seed in a bright orange-red pseudo-aril.
Derivation of specific name: orientalis: oriental, eastern
Habitat: In riverine thickets and on termite mounds in hot dry areas.
Altitude range: (metres) 200 - 1600 m
Flowering time:Sep - Nov
Worldwide distribution: From the DRC and East Africa southwards to Angola, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,E
Growth form(s): Climber, tree, shrub over 2 m, shrub under 2 m.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Tuesday 24 January 2023

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 131.

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 179. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 48.

Curtis, B.A. & Mannheimer, C.A. (2005). Tree Atlas of Namibia National Botanic Research Institute, Windhoek Page 118.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 239. As Byrsocarpus orientalis

Mannheimer, C. & Curtis B. (2009). Le Roux and Müller's Field Guide to the Trees and Shrubs of Namibia Macmillan Education, Windhoek, Namibia. Pages 76 - 77. (Includes a picture).

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 35.

Mendes, E.J. (1966). Connaraceae Flora Zambesiaca 2(2) Page 624. As Byrsocarpus coccineus & B. orientalis

Pickering, H. & Roe, E. (2009). Wild Flowers of the Victoria Falls Area Helen Pickering, London Page 52. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 48.

Smith, P. & Allen, Q. (2004). Field Guide to the Trees and Shrubs of the Miombo Woodlands Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew ISBN 1 84246 073 0 Pages 134 - 135. (Includes a picture).

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 71.

Timberlake, J.R. & Childes, S.L. (2004). Biodiversity of the Four Corners Area: Technical Reviews Volume Two (Chapter 5-15) Appendix 5-1: Plant Checklist Occasional Publications in Biodiversity 15 Page 204.

Other sources of information about Rourea orientalis:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Rourea orientalis
Flora of Caprivi: Rourea orientalis
Flora of Malawi: Rourea orientalis
Flora of Mozambique: Rourea orientalis
Flora of Zambia: Rourea orientalis

External websites:

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

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: Species information: Rourea orientalis., retrieved 26 May 2024

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