Tragia kirkiana Müll. Arg.

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Tragia kirkiana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chesa Purchase Land, Darwin District

Tragia kirkiana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chesa Purchase Land, Darwin District

Tragia kirkiana

Photo: Bart Wursten
Chesa Purchase Land, Darwin District

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

Synonyms: Tragia angustifolia sensu Benth.
Tragia stolziana Pax & Hoffm.
Common names:
Status: Native
Climbing perennial herb with stinging hairs. Stems up to 3 m long, growing from a woody rootstock, sparsely hairy to almost hairless. Leaves triangular-lanceolate to linear-lanceolate, up to c. 12 cm long, cordate at the 5-7-veined base, often hastate with 2 rounded lobes, sparsely hairy to almost hairless on both surfaces, sometimes bristly on the midrib and veins below; margin sharply dentate. Inflorescences terminal or leaf-opposed, up to 15 cm long on a peduncle up to 15 cm long. Flowers unisexual on the same inflorescence. Calyx of the female flowers densely covered in stiff hairs, consisting of 3 lobes; each lobe palmately divided into 11-13 linear lobes again (see image 3). Fruit 3-lobed, 4 × 8 mm, smooth, with rough hairs on the ribs of the lobes.
Notes: This species is very similar to the more common and widespread T. okanyua, differing mainly in the 3-lobed calyx on the female flowes.
Derivation of specific name: kirkiana: named after Dr John Kirk, who accompanied David Livingstone on his Zambezi expedition of 1858
Habitat: In riverine forest and high-rainfall miombo woodland, often in rocky places.
Altitude range: (metres) Up to 1300 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Mpumalanga, South Africa.
Zimbabwe distribution: N,W,C,S
Growth form(s): Climber.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Images last updated: Thursday 29 January 2009

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 149. (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 43.

Radcliffe-Smith, A. (1996). Euphorbiaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(4) Pages 235 - 236.

Other sources of information about Tragia kirkiana:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Tragia kirkiana
Flora of Mozambique: Tragia kirkiana
Flora of Zambia: Tragia kirkiana

External websites:

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

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: Tragia kirkiana., retrieved 21 April 2024

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