Desmodium adscendens (Sw.) DC.
var. robustum B.G. Schub.

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Desmodium adscendens var. robustum

Photo: David Gwynne-Evans
Lower slopes Mt Mabu

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Synonyms: Hedysarum adscendens Sw.
Common names:
Frequency: Locally common
Status: Native
Prostrate perennial herb rooting at the nodes or sometimes straggling 20-100 cm long. Stems reddish-brown, covered in spreading white hairs when young. Leaves 3-foliolate with leaflets up to 5.5 × 3.5 cm, elliptic to round or obovate, broadly rounded at the apex, almost hairless or with fine very short hairs above, densely hairy beneath; margin entire; petiole 5-30 mm long. Stipules lanceolate, 7-10 mm long,striate, hairy. Inflorescences mostly terminal alax 2-11 cm long with a peduncle 4-10 cm long. Flowers with standard whitish, greenish-blue, pink or mauve, obovate; wings bright pinkish-mauve; keel greenish-white. Fruit 20-25 mm long, of 2-5 articles, semi-elliptic, joined by narrow necks and covered with short hooked hairs.
Derivation of specific name:
Habitat: Various types of woodland and riverine forest.
Altitude range: Up to 1350 m
Flowering time:
Worldwide distribution: Widespread in tropical Africa.
Mozambique distribution: N,Z,MS
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: Sunday 22 July 2012

Drummond, R.B. (1972). A list of Rhodesian Legumes. Kirkia 8(2) Page 219.

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 47.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 97.

Verdcourt, B. (2000). Papilionoideae Flora Zambesiaca 3(6) Pages 5 - 21. (Includes a picture).

Other sources of information about Desmodium adscendens var. robustum:

Our websites:

Flora of Malawi: Desmodium adscendens var. robustum
Flora of Zambia: Desmodium adscendens var. robustum
Flora of Zimbabwe: Desmodium adscendens var. robustum

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Desmodium adscendens
African Plant Database: Desmodium adscendens
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Desmodium adscendens
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Desmodium adscendens
ePIC (electronic Plant Information Center): Desmodium adscendens
Flora Zambesiaca web site: Desmodium adscendens
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Desmodium adscendens
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network): Desmodium adscendens
iNaturalist: Desmodium adscendens
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Desmodium adscendens
JSTOR Plant Science: Desmodium adscendens
Kew Herbarium catalogue: Desmodium adscendens
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Desmodium adscendens
Plants of the World Online: Desmodium adscendens
The Plant List (version 1.1): Desmodium adscendens
Tropicos: Desmodium adscendens
Wikipedia: Desmodium adscendens

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave 2007-20

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2020). Flora of Mozambique: Species information: Desmodium adscendens var. robustum., retrieved 6 July 2020

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