Margaritaria discoidea (Baill.) G.L. Webster
var. nitida (Pax) Radcl.-Sm.

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Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida

Katanga Province, DRC
Photo: Jos Stevens

Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida

Katanga Province, DRC
Photo: Jos Stevens

Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida

Katanga Province, DRC
Oct 2006
Photo: Jos Stevens

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Synonyms: Phyllanthus discoideus (Baill.) Müll. Arg.
Common names:
Status: Native
Very variable shrub or tree (see note below). Leaves thinly textured, bright green, ovate, elliptic to obovate, often very small but as large as 10 to 13 cm in forest specimens. Flowers green, unisexual, sexes on different trees. Male flowers numerous in axillary clusters; female flowers in axillary pairs. Fruit a 3-lobed capsule, pale green when ripe.
Type location:
Notes: This species occurs in a wide variety of habitats and varies greatly in shape and size, according to where it grows. In wooded grassland and woodland it is usually a shrub or small tree; in evergreen forest it may become a medium to large tree.
Derivation of specific name: discoidea: disc-like;
nitida: glossy, shining
Habitat: In wooded grassland and woodland, less often in evergreen forest
Altitude range: Up to 1700 m
Flowering time:Sep - Nov
Worldwide distribution: Throughout tropical Africa to KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca): B,N,W,E,S
Zambian distribution (Provinces): Nw,Cb,N,E,C,S,W
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species: Charaxes etesipe tavetensis (Larval foodplant)
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Monday 11 July 2016

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 414. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 38.

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 25.

Curtis, B.A. & Mannheimer, C.A. (2005). Tree Atlas of Namibia National Botanic Research Institute, Windhoek Page 319.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 251. As Phyllanthus discoideus

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 42.

Radcliffe-Smith, A. (1996). Euphorbiaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(4) Pages 32 - 35. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 57.

Siebert, S. & Mössmer, M. (Editors) (2002). SABONET Southern Mozambique Expedition 2001; Provisional Plant Checklist of the Maputo Elephant Reserve (MER) and Licuati Forest Reserve (LFR) SABONET News 7(1) Page 25. As Margaritaria discoidea

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 88.

Other sources of information about Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida
Flora of Caprivi: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida
Flora of Malawi: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida
Flora of Mozambique: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida
Flora of Zimbabwe: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mike Bingham, Annette Willemen, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Mark Hyde, 2011-24

Bingham, M.G., Willemen, A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. and Hyde, M.A. (2024). Flora of Zambia: Species information: Margaritaria discoidea var. nitida., retrieved 16 June 2024

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