Plants photographed elsewhere in Namibia (not on Kyffhäuser)
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Osyris lanceolata Hochst. & Steud.


Osyris lanceolata

Leafy branch



Family: Santalaceae
Full name: Osyris lanceolata Hochst. & Steud.
Location: Sesriem canyon (2415BD)
ID status: Fairly certain
Afrikaans common name(s): Bergbas, Jakkalspruim
English common name(s): Transvaal sumach, African sandalwood, Bark bush, Rock tannin-bush
Synonym(s): Osyris abyssinica Hochst. ex A. Rich. (1850)
Osyris quadripartita Salzm. ex Decne. (1836)
Osyris abyssinica f. latifolia Fiori
Osyris arborea Wall. ex A. DC.
Osyris densifolia Peter (1932)
Osyris laeta Peter (1932)
Osyris oblanceolata Peter (1932)
Osyris parvifolia Baker (1913)
Osyris rigidissima Engl. (1892)
Osyris tenuifolia Engl. (1895)
Osyris urundiensis De Wild. (1925)
Osyris wightiana Wall. ex Wight
Osyris quadripartita var. canariensis Kämmer (1975)
Osyris compressa auct. auct., non (Berg.) A. DC.
Osyris pendula Balf. f.
Osyris quadrifida Salzm. ex A. DC.
Status: Native
Description: Shrub or small tree, 1-7 m. Leaves slightly glaucous, thick in texture. Flowers yellow-green. Fruits becoming red when ripe.

Mostly a large evergreen shrub but occasionally a small tree. Branches blue-green, erect and angular. Leaves alternate, lanceolate, 3-4.5 cm long, glaucous, thickly leathery, veining obscure; apex with a sharp tip; margin entire. Flowers in axillary clusters on long stalks, small, yellow-green. Fruit c. 10 x 15 mm, yellow becoming red when ripe, crowned with the remains of the calyx. (from Flora of Zimbabwe website)

Shrub or small tree to c. 7 m tall, glabrous, sometimes with pendent branches. Leaves subsessile, rigid, elliptic to elliptic-oblong, 1–7 x 0.5–4 cm, acute or mucronate at the apex, with slightly thickened margins. Flowers yellowish-green; perianth-lobes triangular-ovate, 1–1.5 mm long; male flowers in 5–13-flowered cymes; female flowers in 1–3-flowered cymes. Drupes 5–10 mm in diam., becoming bright red. (from JSTOR Global Plants website)

Shrub or small tree, 1.5–9(–14) m tall, all parts glabrous; bark coarsely furrowed; slash bright crimson; branches somewhat flattened and sometimes rather pendent. Leaves usually alternate, elliptic or elliptic-oblong, rarely obovate, 1.5–6.5 x 0.7–4 cm, abruptly apiculate, base cuneate, veins immersed, only midvein raised beneath and running back down stem in a narrow ridge; petiole 1–3 mm long, articulated to a small cushion. Flowers either hermaphrodite or male, plants androdioecious, hermaphrodite flowers in axils of upper leaves; peduncles solitary, usually 1-flowered, occasionally flowers in 2–3-flowered dichasia; male flowers both axillary and terminal, often panicled, each peduncle usually terminating in an umbellate cluster of flowers, rarely flowers solitary or in a 2–3-flowered dichasium; peduncles 4–28 mm long; bracts and bracteoles linear-lanceolate, 1–3 mm long. Perianth yellowish green, leathery; hermaphrodite flowers: tube 0.5–0.6 mm long, obscured inside by disk, lobes 3(–4), spreading, ovate-deltate, 1.5–2 x 1.8–2.2 mm, tips slightly hooded; male flowers similar. Stamens 3(–4); filaments 0.5–0.7 mm long; anthers 0.5 mm long. Ovary 2–2.8 mm long, ovules 3(–4) in hermaphrodite flowers, ovules and placenta aborted in male flowers; style 0.8–1 mm long, thick, cylindric; stigma in hermaphrodite flowers normally 4- rarely 3-lobed, lobes ellipsoid, prominent; in male flowers both style and stigma aborted or rudimentary. Fruit ellipsoid, 5–6.5 mm in diameter when dry, epicarp thin, fleshy, red when ripe. (from JSTOR Global Plants website)
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: 30 Apr 2016
Camera make: Canon
Camera model: EOS 7D Mark II
Lens aperture: f/9.0
Shutter speed: 1/200 s
ISO speed: 1250
Content last updated: 01 Jun 2020


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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