Hymenodictyon floribundum (Hochst. & Steud.) B. L. Rob.

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Hymenodictyon floribundum

Drawing: Doreen Bolnick

Hymenodictyon floribundum

Drawing: Doreen Bolnick

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Synonyms: Hymenodictyon kurria Hochst.
Kurria floribunda Hochst. & Steud.
Common names:
Status: Native
Shrub or small tree to 6 m. Inflorescence long, 6 - 22 cm, with, at the base, a pair of characteristic long-petiolate, leaf-like elliptic-lanceolate bracts, 3.5 - 10 cm long. Stipules often 2-fid. Leaves: lamina 5 - 18 × 2 - 11.5 cm, elliptic to obovate; with venation drying finely reticulate beneath; glabrous above and beneath except for the domatia but, in some forms, hairy to even tomentose beneath; apex shortly acuminate; domatia present. Inflorescence a dense terminal spike. Corolla reddish-brown; tube 4-7 mm; lobes 0.8 mm. Capsule 1 - 1.5 cm long, brown with pale lenticels. Seeds 0.7 - 1 cm, winged.
Type location:
Notes: It owes its common name Fire-bush to the bright red display of the "autumn" leaves.
Derivation of specific name: floribundum: with abundant flowers
Habitat: In rocky terrain, often as as a constituent of shallow vegetation "islands" overlying sheet rock. Occasionally along the margins of riverine and evergreen forest.
Altitude range:
Flowering time:Sep - Dec
Worldwide distribution: Widespread throughout tropical Africa from Guinea to Ethiopia and south to Zimbabwe.
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca): N,W,C
Zambian distribution (Provinces): Nw,N,Mc,C
Growth form(s): Tree, shrub over 2 m.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Monday 6 February 2017

Bridson, D.M. & Verdcourt, B. (2003). Rubiaceae, Part 3 Flora Zambesiaca 5(3) Pages 424 - 426. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 242. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 1018. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 32.

Coates Palgrave, K. (revised and updated by Meg Coates Palgrave) (2002). Trees of Southern Africa 3rd edition. Struik, South Africa Pages 1036 - 1037. (Includes a picture).

Da Silva, M.C., Izidine, S. & Amude, A.B. (2004). A preliminary checklist of the vascular plants of Mozambique. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 30 Sabonet, Pretoria Page 101.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 274.

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 72.

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 89.

Steedman, E.C. (1933). Some Trees, Shrubs and Lianes of Southern Rhodesia. Page 79. As Hymenodictyon kurria (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 163.

Van Wyk, B. & Van Wyk, P. (1997). Field Guide to Trees of Southern Africa. Struik, South Africa Pages 280 - 281. (Includes a picture).

Van Wyk, B. & Van Wyk, P. (2013). Field Guide to Trees of Southern Africa (Second edition) Struik, South Africa Pages 330 - 331. (Includes a picture).

White, F., Dowsett-Lemaire, F. & Chapman, J.D. (2001). Evergreen forest flora of Malawi Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Page 477.

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 98.

Other sources of information about Hymenodictyon floribundum:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Hymenodictyon floribundum
Flora of Malawi: Hymenodictyon floribundum
Flora of Mozambique: Hymenodictyon floribundum
Flora of Zimbabwe: Hymenodictyon floribundum

External websites:

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

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: Hymenodictyon floribundum.
https://www.zambiaflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=155120, retrieved 13 April 2024

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