Tridax procumbens L.

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Tridax procumbens

Photo: Bart Wursten
Hysteria Lane, Area 3, Lilongwe

Tridax procumbens

Photo: Bart Wursten
Hysteria Lane, Area 3, Lilongwe

Tridax procumbens

Photo: Bart Wursten
Hysteria Lane, Area 3, Lilongwe

Tridax procumbens

Photo: Bart Wursten
Hysteria Lane, Area 3, Lilongwe

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

Common names:
Frequency: Common
Status: Introduced
Annual or sometimes perennial, prostrate to ascending herb to c.50 cm. Leaves: petiole up to c.2 cm; lamina ovate, strigose-pubescent on both sides; margin coarsely and often deeply dentate. Peduncles long, 5-25 cm, bare. Capitula 1-1.5 cm in diameter. Rays c.4 mm, pale yellow. Receptacular scales c.6 mm, linear. Achenes c.2 mm, narrowly obovoid. Pappus c.3 mm, of c.20 alternately long and short plumose setae.
Notes: Often considered a lowly and humble plant and despised as a weed but there is no flower, indigenous or cultivated, that can rival its popularity in attracting butterflies. If you want butterflies in your garden, treasure it.
Derivation of specific name: procumbens: with stems lying along the ground; procumbent
Habitat: A weed of disturbed ground, often on roadsides and in waste places; also in naturally disturbed areas such as sandy stream beds.
Altitude range: Up to 1570 m
Flowering time:All year
Worldwide distribution: Native of Mexico, but now a pantropical weed.
Malawi distribution:
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 28 March 2023

Bandeira, S., Bolnick, D. & Barbosa, F. (2007). Wild Flowers of Southern Mozambique Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Maputo, Mozambique Page 211. (Includes a picture).

Baumann, G. (2005). Photographic Guide to Wildflowers of Malawi Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi Pages 172 - 173. (Includes a picture).

Beentje, H.J. & Ghazanfar, S.A. (eds.) (2005). Compositae (Part 3) Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 764 - 765. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 56.

Kirby, G. (2013). Wild Flowers of Southeast Botswana Struik Nature, Cape Town South Africa Page 69. (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 28.

Pickering, H. & Roe, E. (2009). Wild Flowers of the Victoria Falls Area Helen Pickering, London Page 41. (Includes a picture).

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 38.

Wild, H. (1967). The Compositae of the Flora Zambesiaca area. 1. Heliantheae. Kirkia 6(1) Page 11.

Other sources of information about Tridax procumbens:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Tridax procumbens
Flora of Caprivi: Tridax procumbens
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Tridax procumbens
Flora of Mozambique: Tridax procumbens
Flora of Zambia: Tridax procumbens
Flora of Zimbabwe: Tridax procumbens

External websites:

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

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: Tridax procumbens., retrieved 18 May 2024

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