Selaginella versicolor Spring

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Synonyms: Selaginella nitens Baker
Stachygynandrum versicolor (Spring) Carruth.
Common names:
Plant ± erect with main stem 10–40 cm tall, glabrous, much branched in the upper part; rhizophores filiform, present only at the base, yellowish, ± 2 cm long. Stolons often numerous, originating at base of stem, often well developed and 15–20 cm long, bearing small leaves. Branches pinnate or bipinnate, narrowly lanceolate to ovate-elliptic in outline. Leaves glossy, strongly dimorphic save at base of main stem, with midvein almost reaching apex and margin hyaline, spaced in lower parts but imbricate in upper parts; lateral leaves 4–6 × 2–2.8 mm, with 2 false nerves one on each side of midrib, minutely toothed, unequilateral, the acroscopic half lanceolate, rounded at base, acute at apex, the basiscopic half oblong often rounded at base, obtuse at apex; median leaves obovate-elliptic in outline, 2–2.5 × 1 mm, rounded at the base, minutely toothed, apex ending abruptly in a long very narrow bristle-like point; axillary leaves ovate-lanceolate in outline, ± 3 × 1.5 mm, wedge-shaped at base, apex pointed, minutely toothed, with 2 false nerves as in lateral leaves. Strobili solitary at apices of ultimate branchlets, 6–8 × 1–3 mm. Sporophylls uniform, broadly triangular, convex, ± 1.5 mm long, 0.7–0.8 mm wide, narrowly acute at apex, with hyaline ciliate margins; spores of two kinds.
Notes: Not mentioned in Flora Zambesiaca, recorded from Malawi by Bizarri who saw the specimen Buchanan 1221 at Kew (det. by Alston); Buchanan collected only in southern Malawi and no futher material has been seen (B. Verdcourt, 2005, F.T.E.A. Selaginellaceae)
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Damp, deeply shaded forest.
Altitude range:
Worldwide distribution: Guinea to Angola, Central African Republic, DRC, Malawi, Sudan.
Malawi distribution:
Growth form(s): Lithophyte, terrestrial.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Pages 27 - 28.

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Page 28.

Verdcourt, B. (2005). Selaginellaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa Pages 10 - 11.

Other sources of information about Selaginella versicolor:

External websites:

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

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: Selaginella versicolor., retrieved 15 July 2024

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