Plants photographed on Kyffhäuser
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Tribulus terrestris L.

Tribulus terrestris

Leaves and flower

Family: Zygophyllaceae
Full name: Tribulus terrestris L.
Location: Kyffhäuser (2416AD + 2416CB)
ID status: Fairly certain
Afrikaans common name(s): Dubbeltjie, Gewone dubbeltjie, Duifiedoring, Duwweltjie, Volstruisdubbeltjie, Driedoringdubbeltjie, Dubbeltjiedoring, Duiweltjie, Hondedoring, Plat dubbeltjie, Rank dubbeltjie, Volstruisdoring, Geeldubbeltjie
English common name(s): Puncture vine, Goat's head bur, Maltese cross, Devil's thorn, Common dubbeltjie, Calthrop, Small calthrop, Devil's eyelashes, Burnut
Synonym(s): Tribulus albescens Schltr. ex Dinter fide SWA
Tribulus murex Schltr. ex Dinter fide SWA
Tribulus saharae A.Chev. fide Fl. W. Trop. Africa, ed. 2
Tribulus terrestris L. var. brachyceras Batt. & Trab.
Tribulus terrestris L. var. inermis Boiss.
Tribulus terrestris L. var. tomentosa Batt. & Trab.
Status: Native
Description: Each flower is about 0.5 in. (12.5 mm) across, consisting of 5 yellow petals, 5 triangular green sepals, 10 stamens with yellow anthers, and a pistil with a 5-lobed stigma.

Prostrate annual herb. All parts covered in long whitish hairs. Leaves opposite paripinnate, one leaf in a pair often longer than the other. Peduncle shorter than or as long as, the subtending leaf. Flowers solitary in leaf axils. Petals 3-8(-12) mm, light yellow. Fruit a hard triangular drupe with sharp spines. (from Flora of Zimbabwe website)

A spreading prostrate or decumbent annual, occasionally more or less frutescent below and persisting two or more years. Branches from a few inches to 2 or 3 ft. in length, pubescent, villous or hispid. Leaves in unequal pairs, the larger 1–2.5 in., with 5–8 pairs of oblong or linear-oblong, more or less acute, sessile or subsessile, opposite leaflets, oblique at the base, villous beneath, often glabrescent above. Peduncles 0.25–1 in., scarcely or not at all thickened in fruit. Flowers usually yellow. Stigmatic lobes longer than the diameter of the style (or shorter in ß. cistoides). Calyx deciduous. Fruit-carpels tubercled and often setose on the back and above, each carpel usually with 2 lateral divergent, straight, acute spines inserted above the middle and 2 shorter spines near the base directed downwards; the spines rarely reduced to mere tubercles. (from JSTOR Global Plants website / Flora of Tropical Africa)

Pubescent to villous annual. Leaves 2–6 cm long; leaflets 5–8 pairs, oblong to lanceolate, usually 4–18 x 1.5–5 mm; stipules linear to lanceolate, up to 8 mm long. Pedicel 5–10 mm long. Sepals linear-lanceolate, 3–6 mm long. Petals yellow, 4–8 mm long. Stamens 8–10; filaments up to 3 mm long. Style very short or absent; stigma ± pyramidal, c. 1 mm long. Fruit disc-shaped; pedicel c. 10 mm long; mericarps 4–5 x 2–3 mm, with 2 pairs of spines. (from JSTOR Global Plants website / Flora Somalia)

Leaflets in 5–8 pairs, sub-equal, rather acute; peduncle from the axil of the shorter leaf; petals rather longer than the calyx; stigma sub-sessile, hemispheric; carpels with 2–4 larger spines, and prickly on the back. A decumbent or prostrate annual, with stems 6–12 inches long or longer, villous or glabrescent, in ß. hispid or hirsute. Leaves opposite, unequal, the longest 1–1.5 inch; leaflets oblong, acute, green above, sparingly appressedly villous, below appressedly pubescent, often whitish or silky. Stipules ovato-lanceolate, 2–3 lines long. Peduncles axillary, solitary, shorter than the leaf, the fruit-stalk nearly as long, villous or, in ß., hairy. Flowers yellow or whitish. Sepals 1.5–2 lines long. Petals 1/2 as long again as the calyx, obtuse. Stigma roundish-conical, 5-rayed, with inconspicuous style. Carpels crested and tubercled on the back, or prickly and hairy, in ?. more coarsely hairy, armed with 4, rarely 3–2 marginal spines, the two upper spines much divaricate, 3 lines long; 2 lower turned downwards and shorter. In var. ?. the upper spines are not more than 1 line long, often much shorter, sometimes very short and confounded with the dorsal prickles. Var. ß. is not unlike T. cistoides, &c., which, however, is readily known by its much larger flowers and long styles. (from JSTOR Global Plants website / Flora Capensis)
Link(s) African Plant Database
JSTOR Plant Science
Kew Herbarium Catalogue
BGBM Berlin-Dahlem - Virtual Herbarium
Züricher Herbarien
iNaturalist (Namibia / Alex Dreyer)
iNaturalist (Namibia)
iNaturalist (southern Africa)
Flora of Zimbabwe
Fleurs de notre Terre - Galerie Namibie
Tree Atlas of Namibia
Photographer: AA Dreyer
Date of photograph: 13 Dec 2008
Camera make: Canon
Camera model: PowerShot A700
Lens aperture: f/4.0
Shutter speed: 1/160 s
ISO speed: -
Content last updated: 18 Apr 2024

Note: The identification of some of the plants on this website is not 100% certain. Any comments will be highly appreciated. I would also be willing to supply higher resolution images upon request. Please contact me at the e-mail address given below.

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Last updated 18 Apr 2024

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