Acanthospermum hispidum DC.

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Acanthospermum hispidum

Photo: Bart Wursten
Fuel Station, Rumphi.

Acanthospermum hispidum

Photo: Bart Wursten
Fuel Station, Rumphi.

Acanthospermum hispidum

Photo: Bart Wursten
Fuel Station, Rumphi.

Acanthospermum hispidum

Photo: Bart Wursten
Fuel Station, Rumphi.

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

Common names: Upright starbur (English)
Status: Introduced
Erect annual much-branched subshrub, up to 60 cm. Stems covered in coarse white hairs. Leaves opposite, oblong-lanceolate, sessile; margin variously entire or toothed. Inflorescences axillary or terminal with minute creamy-yellow flowers. Fruits spiny with 2 long spines at the apex, arranged in star-shaped groups of 7 or 8.
Derivation of specific name: hispidum: hispid, bristly
Habitat: In cultivated and disturbed soils.
Altitude range: Up to 1540 m
Flowering time:Feb - Apr
Worldwide distribution: Native to South America, now a pan-tropical weed.
Malawi distribution: N,C,S
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 4 July 2023

Beentje, H.J. & Ghazanfar, S.A. (eds.) (2005). Compositae (Part 3) Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 766 - 768. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mugarisanwa, N.H. (2003). Plants of the Matobo District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 2.

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 146.

Heath, A. & Heath, R. (2009). Field Guide to the Plants of Northern Botswana including the Okavango Delta Kew Publishing Page 76. (Includes a picture).

Kirby, G. (2013). Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Struik Nature, Cape Town South Africa Page 347. (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 23.

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 27.

Pickering, H. & Roe, E. (2009). Wild Flowers of the Victoria Falls Area Helen Pickering, London Page 32. (Includes a picture).

Roodt, V. (2011). Wild flowers, Waterplants and Grasses of the Okavango Delta and Kalahari "Did You Know" nature series Struik Nature for Veronica Roodt Publications Page 12. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 30.

Timberlake, J.R. & Childes, S.L. (2004). Biodiversity of the Four Corners Area: Technical Reviews Volume Two (Chapter 5-15) Appendix 5-1: Plant Checklist Occasional Publications in Biodiversity 15 Page 198.

Vernon, R. (1983). Field Guide to Important Arable Weeds of Zambia Dept. of Agriculture, Chilanga, Zambia Pages 78 - 79. (Includes a picture).

Wild, H. (1955). Common Rhodesian Weeds Government of Rhodesia, Salisbury Page 61. (Includes a picture).

Wild, H. (1967). The Compositae of the Flora Zambesiaca area. 1. Heliantheae. Kirkia 6(1) Pages 5 - 6.

Other sources of information about Acanthospermum hispidum:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Acanthospermum hispidum
Flora of Caprivi: Acanthospermum hispidum
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Acanthospermum hispidum
Flora of Mozambique: Acanthospermum hispidum
Flora of Zambia: Acanthospermum hispidum
Flora of Zimbabwe: Acanthospermum hispidum

External websites:

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

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: Acanthospermum hispidum., retrieved 16 April 2024

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