Macaranga capensis (Baill.) Benth. ex Sim

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Macaranga capensis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Morumbodzi Falls, lower slopes Mt Gorongosa

Macaranga capensis

Photo: Bart Wursten
Survey Plot 3, Magorogodo hills, Zomba Community

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Synonyms: Mallotus capensis (Baill.) Müll.
Mappa capensis Baill.
Common names: River macaranga (English) Spiny macaranga (English) Wild poplar (English)
Frequency: Locally frequent
Status: Native
Medium to large tree. Bark pale grey, smooth with whitish horizontal markings; trunk often buttressed in large specimens; branches often armed with short spines. Leaves spirally arranged, broadly ovate, up to 20 × 25 cm, more or less deeply cordate and often peltate at the base, 5-11-veined from the base, densely golden-gland dotted below; margin glandular-dentate to almost entire. Flowers in branched racemose inflorescences, greenish to creamy-yellow, unisexual, on different trees. Fruit subspherical, rarely 2-lobed, up to 6 × 10 mm, covered in yellowish-green glands when young, smooth, hairless and green when ripe.
Derivation of specific name: capensis: of the Cape
Habitat: In evergreen forest and along stream banks.
Altitude range: Up to 1400 m
Flowering time:Oct - Jan
Worldwide distribution: From southern Ethiopia south to South Africa
Mozambique distribution: N,Z,T,MS,M
Growth form(s): Tree.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
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Burrows, J.E. & Willis, C.K. (eds) (2005). Plants of the Nyika Plateau Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 31 SABONET, Pretoria Page 146. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E., Burrows, S.M., Lötter, M.C. & Schmidt, E. (2018). Trees and Shrubs Mozambique Publishing Print Matters (Pty), Cape Town. Page 459. (Includes a picture).

Chapano, C. & Mamuto, M. (2003). Plants of the Chimanimani District National Herbarium and Botanic Garden, Zimbabwe Page 37.

Coates Palgrave, K. (revised and updated by Meg Coates Palgrave) (2002). Trees of Southern Africa 3rd edition. Struik, South Africa Page 508.

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 57.

Dowsett-Lemaire, F. (1989). The flora and phytogeography of the evergreen forests of Malawi. I: Afromontane and mid-altitude forests; Bull. Jard. Bot. Nat. Belg. 59(1/2) Page 18.

Drummond, R.B. (1975). A list of trees, shrubs and woody climbers indigenous or naturalised in Rhodesia. Kirkia 10(1) Page 252.

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 42.

Phiri, P.S.M. (2005). A Checklist of Zambian Vascular Plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 32 Page 49.

Radcliffe-Smith, A. (1996). Euphorbiaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(4) Pages 164 - 165.

Strugnell, A.M. (2006). A Checklist of the Spermatophytes of Mount Mulanje, Malawi Scripta Botanica Belgica 34 National Botanic Garden of Belgium Page 87.

Timberlake, J.R., Bayliss, J., Dowsett-Lemaire, F., Congdon, C., Branch, B., Collins, S., Curran, M., Dowsett, R,J., Fishpool, L., Francisco, J., Harris, Kopp, M. & de Sousa, C. (2012). Mt Mabu, Mozambique: Biodiversity and Conservation Report produced under the Darwin Initiative Award 15/036. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, London Page 73.

Van Wyk, B. & Van Wyk, P. (1997). Field Guide to Trees of Southern Africa. Struik, South Africa Pages 188 - 189. (Includes a picture).

White, F., Dowsett-Lemaire, F. & Chapman, J.D. (2001). Evergreen forest flora of Malawi Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew Pages 254 - 255. (Includes a picture).

Wursten, B., Timberlake, J. & Darbyshire, I. (2017). The Chimanimani Mountains: an updated checklist. Kirkia 19(1) Page 92.

Other sources of information about Macaranga capensis:

Our websites:

Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Macaranga capensis
Flora of Malawi: Macaranga capensis
Flora of Zambia: Macaranga capensis
Flora of Zimbabwe: Macaranga capensis

External websites:

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

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave 2007-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Mozambique: Species information: Macaranga capensis., retrieved 12 April 2024

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