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Origin and Habitat: Zimbabwe and Zambia
habitat and ecology. Pterodiscus elliottii grows in woodland, especially with Colophospermum (mopane woodland) toghether with Ipomoea welwitschii, Chlorophytum sylvaticum, Lapeirousia eryantha, and Raphionacme longituba.
- Pterodiscus elliottii Baker ex Stapf
Description: Pterodiscus elliottii is a perennial herb, about 20 cm high, consisting of a short woody aerial stem arising from a subterranean tuber . Flowers dark purple to wine-red, sometimes with a yellow throat, tube funnel-shaped, 4-5 cm long
Derivation of specific name: elliottii For C. F. Elliott, English botanical collector in Africa before 1900.
Tuber: Subterranean pyriform or sometimes napiform.
Stem: Short woody, moderately glandular-mealy.
Leaves: Densely glandular-mealy below, very sparingly above, ovate-lanceolate to oblong or oblanceolate, from a cuneate base, entire or with slightly wavy margins or very slightly toothed, 2,5-12 cm long and 14-25 mm broad, if dentate, then the teeth more conspicuous and concentrated towards the apex of the leaf, usually with 4–5 pairs of lateral veins. Petiole up to 25 mm long.
Pedicels: 2 mm long.
Flowers: Dark purple to wine-red, sometimes with a yellow throat. Calyx-tube more or less loosely hairy within, 2 mm long; segments lanceolate, acute. Corolla tube funnel-shaped (except at the very base) and very slender up to the middle then gradually widened into the wide mouth, (25-) 40–50 mm long, about 35 mm in diameter, wine-red, passing into yellow below, very slightly asymmetric. Limb 35 mm in. across. Lobes subequal. Filaments bearded at the very base only, longer 12 mm long.
Fruit: Near round in lateral view, about 22 mm long and 20 mm wide, 4-winged; the wings about 3–4 mm broad; beak very narrow.
Seeds: 1–2 in each loculus.
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) O. Stapf., “Flora of Tropical Africa”, Vol IV, Part 2, 1905
2) H. D. Ihlenfeldt, “Flora Zambesiaca”, Vol 8, Part 3, Page 94, 1988
3) Urs Eggli, Leonard E. Newton “Etymological Dictionary of Succulent Plant Names” Springer Science & Business Media, 29 June 2013
4) Bothalia, Volume 28, Botanical Research Institute, Department of Agricultural Technical Services., 1998
5) Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2018). "Flora of Zimbabwe: Species information: Pterodiscus elliottii".
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/speciesdata/species.php?species_id=152460, retrieved 14 August 2018
6) Chapano, C., Mugarisanwa, N.H. “Plants of the Matobo District” National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 30, 2003
Pterodiscus elliottii Photo by: © Plantemania
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