Satyrium shirense Rolfe

Selected images: Click on each image to see a larger version and details of the record View all images (3)

Satyrium shirense

Photo: Bart Wursten
Along main road between Lake Kaulime turn-off and Kaperepeze road, Nyika National Park

Satyrium shirense

Photo: Bart Wursten
Along main road between Lake Kaulime turn-off and Kaperepeze road, Nyika National Park

Satyrium shirense

Photo: Bart Wursten
Along main road between Lake Kaulime turn-off and Kaperepeze road, Nyika National Park

Detailed records: Display species records QDS maps by: Google Maps Point records by Google Maps

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

Common names:
Status: Native
Slender terrestrial herb 13–45 cm tall. Leaves 6–7; the lower leaves spreading, near the the stem base but not appressed to ground, broadly lanceolate to ovate, 5–14.5 cm long, light green; upper leaves bract-like, spaced along the stem. Inflorescence fairly densely several-many-flowered, 3–15 cm long. Flowers creamy-white; bracts reflexed, up to 15 mm long. Sepals and petals deflexed, the lateral sepals spirally twisted. Median sepal oblong-oblanceolate, 3–4 mm long; lateral sepals slightly longer and almost twice as wide. Petals similar sepal but narrower. Lip more or less globose with a slight dorsal keel, 4–5 mm long, fleshy with a narrow mouth. Spurs 8–12 mm long, slender, parallel to ovary; some flowers with 2 additional vestigial spurs.
Notes: This species is very similar to the more widespread S. chlorocorys but in the field is easily distinguished by it smaller more slender habit and constistent creamy-white flowers. In Nyika the two species are even found growing together but no intermediates occur.
Derivation of specific name: shirense: of the Shire Highlands in Southern Malawi where the type was collected.
Habitat: In montane grassland, on rocky hillsides and seepage slopes.
Altitude range: 1750 - 2500 m
Flowering time:Feb - Apr
Worldwide distribution: Only known from Malawi and just into Zambia (Nyika only).
Malawi distribution: N,C,S
Growth form(s):
Endemic status: Near Endemic
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species
Content last updated: Monday 15 April 2019

Baumann, G. (2005). Photographic Guide to Wildflowers of Malawi Wildlife and Environmental Society of Malawi Pages 230 - 231. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 335.

La Croix, I. & Cribb, P.J. (1995). Orchidaceae (Part 1) Flora Zambesiaca 11(1) Pages 217 - 218.

La Croix, I. et al. (1991). Orchids of Malawi A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam Page 144. (Includes a picture).

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 124.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 141.

Williamson, G. (1977). The Orchids of South Central Africa J.M. Dent & Sons Ltd., London. Pages 96 - 97. (Includes a picture).

Other sources of information about Satyrium shirense:

Our websites:

Flora of Zambia: Satyrium shirense

External websites:

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

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: Satyrium shirense., retrieved 16 July 2024

Site software last modified: 3 April 2018 9:36pm
Terms of use