Biophytum helenae Buscal. & Muschl.

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Biophytum helenae

Habit
Riverine bank
Chipili area, below Kalonde Falls
Jan 2020
Photo: Nick Wightman

Biophytum helenae

Habit
Riverine bank
Chipili area, below Kalonde Falls
Jan 2020
Photo: Nick Wightman

Biophytum helenae

Flower
Riverine bank
Chipili area, below Kalonde Falls
Jan 2020
Photo: Nick Wightman

Biophytum helenae

Flower
Riverine bank
Chipili area, below Kalonde Falls
Jan 2020
Photo: Nick Wightman

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

Synonyms: Biophytum sensitivum sensu Exell in FZ 2(1): 158, 1963
Common names:
Frequency: Locally common
Status: Native
Description:
Annual terrestrial herb, 10-40 cm growing on a simple slender to stout stem with a single rosette of leaves at the apex; leaves 3-13 cm long composed of up to 21 pairs of leaflets, 3-8 x 2.5-5 mm, subsessile, slightly obliquely square to oblong, appressed pilose or pubescent, rhachis pilose; flowers white, pink, lilac or yellow in 3-10-flowered pseudoumbels, peduncle up to 13 cm long, pubescent, pedicels up to 6 mm long, pubescent; sepals 4-5 x 1-1.5 mm, narrowly lanceolate, 3-5 nerved, pubescent; petals 7-8 mm long, spathulate, glabrous; stamens with 5 longer ones 3 mm long and 5 shorter ones 1.5 mm long; ovary deeply 5-lobed; styles 1-3 mm long, pubescent; capsule 3 x 2 mm, obovate-ellipsoid; seeds 0.5 x 0.3 mm, flattened-ellipsoid, minutely tuberculate, brown.
Type location:
Zambia
Notes: This species was formerly considered conspecific with Biophytum sensitivum (L.) DC. but that taxon is now restricted to East Asia.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: River banks and damp thickets in Brachystegia-evergreen shrub woodland.
Altitude range:
Flowering time:Sep - Jun
Worldwide distribution: Angola, DRC, Burundi, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia.
Zambian distribution (Flora Zambesiaca): N,W
Zambian distribution (Provinces): Nw,N
Growth form(s):
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Tuesday 10 March 2020
Literature:

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 223.

Exell, A.W. (1963). Oxalidaceae Flora Zambesiaca 2(1) Pages 157 - 158. as Biophytum sensitivum (Includes a picture).

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 82.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 142. as Biophytum sensitivum

Other sources of information about Biophytum helenae:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Biophytum helenae
Flora of Malawi: Biophytum helenae
Flora of Mozambique: Biophytum helenae

External websites:

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


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: Biophytum helenae.
https://www.zambiaflora.com/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=178990, retrieved 24 February 2024

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