Cryptolepis obtusa N.E. Br.

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Cryptolepis obtusa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Pokoteke Gorge, near Masvingo

Cryptolepis obtusa

Photo: Bart Wursten
Pokoteke Gorge, near Masvingo

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

Common names:
Status: Native
Many-stemmed climber with milky sap and twining stems 3-5 m long, often purple-brown. Leaves opposite, oblong-elliptic, oblong-obovate, 3-9 cm long, green above; much paler blue-green beneath; apex obtuse to emarginate with a distinct mucro; petioles 4–10 mm long, often purple-brown. Inflorescences axillary, lax to sub-compact, few to many-flowered, hairless. Sepals broadly ovate, 1.5–2 mm long. Corolla creamy-yellow; tube campanulate, 1.5–2 mm long, with papillose spots; lobes linear to linear-ovate, 6–8 mm long. Corona double; lower whorl of clavate lobes, c. 1 mm long; upper whorl of sinus pockets. Fruit consisting of a pair of narrowly linear-lanceolate follicles, horizontally spreading, pointed at the apex, horisontally opposite, cylindrical-ovoid, 8–15 cm long.
Derivation of specific name: obtusa: bluntly rounded or obtuse, referring to the leaf apices.
Habitat: In bushland, savanna, wasteland, grassland and low shrubby vegetation.
Altitude range: Up to 1100 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal South Africa.
Malawi distribution: N,S
Growth form(s): Climber, shrub over 2 m.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

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 25.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 270.

Goyder, D.J., Gilbert, M.G. & Venter, H.J.T. (2020). Apocynaceae (Part 2) Flora Zambesiaca 7(2) Pages 14 - 16. (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 66.

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 24.

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 27.

Other sources of information about Cryptolepis obtusa:

Our websites:

Flora of Mozambique: Cryptolepis obtusa
Flora of Zambia: Cryptolepis obtusa
Flora of Zimbabwe: Cryptolepis obtusa

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Malawi: Species information: Cryptolepis obtusa., retrieved 19 July 2024

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