1. Family: Fabaceae Lindl.
    1. Genus: Gagnebina Neck. ex DC.
      1. Gagnebina commersoniana (Baill.) R.Vig.

        A member of the pea and bean family (Leguminosae/Fabaceae), Gagnebina commersoniana is native to Madagascar. It was named in honour of the French naturalist Joseph-Philibert Commerson who was in Madagascar in 1771. He once wrote: ‘Madagascar is truly the naturalist’s promised land. Here nature seems to have withdrawn into a private sanctuary in order to work on designs which are different from those she has created elsewhere’.

    [KSP]

    Kew Species Profiles

    General Description
    A small shrub from Madagascar, Gagnebina commersoniana was named in honour of the 18th century French naturalist J.-P. Commerson.

    A member of the pea and bean family (Leguminosae/Fabaceae), Gagnebina commersoniana is native to Madagascar. It was named in honour of the French naturalist Joseph-Philibert Commerson who was in Madagascar in 1771. He once wrote: ‘Madagascar is truly the naturalist’s promised land. Here nature seems to have withdrawn into a private sanctuary in order to work on designs which are different from those she has created elsewhere’.

    The generic name Gagnebina honours Swiss physician and botanist Abraham Gagnebin de la Ferrière (1707–1800). The genus Gagnebina only occurs in the Indian Ocean region (from Aldabra to Reunion).

    Species Profile

    Geography and distribution

    Gagnebina commersoniana is native to Madagascar, where it occurs in Antsiranana, Fianarantsoa, Mahajanga and Toliara provinces.

    It grows in thickets, secondary vegetation, shrubby savannah and dry woodlands and on limestone, sand, gneiss or lateritic soils.

    There is also a variety, Gagnebina commersoniana var. aldabrensis, on the island of Aldabra.

    Description

    Overview:Small shrub up to 3 m tall. Leaves are bipinnate (divided into pinnae that are themselves divided again into leaftets).

    Flowers:Flowers are borne in distinct clusters. Lower flowers are sterile, with white or pale pink staminodes (sterile male organs that do not bear pollen). Pale yellow upper flowers are bisexual. However, the inflorescences are pendent so the sterile, showy staminodal flowers are displayed uppermost.

    Fruits and seeds: Pods (fruits) are narrowly oblong to oblong (elongated with parallel sides). Seeds are olive-brown, 3.0×1.5 mm, with a central, open pleurogram (a u-shaped line on both lateral faces of the seed).

    Threats and conservation

    Gagnebina commersoniana is widespread and common in Madagascar. No major threats are known, and populations are believed to be stable at present. Gagnebina commersoniana seeds are stored in the Millennium Seed Bank as an ex situ conservation measure.

    Conservation assessments carried out by Kew

    Gagnebina commersoniana is being monitored as part of the 'IUCN Sampled Red List Index for Plants' project, which aims to produce conservation assessments for a representative sample of the world’s plant species. This information will then be used to monitor trends in extinction risk and help focus conservation efforts where they are needed most.

    Uses

    Gagnebina commersoniana is used in the production of paper in Madagascar.

    Millennium Seed Bank: Seed storage

    The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership aims to save plant life worldwide, focusing on plants under threat and those of most use in the future. Seeds are dried, packaged and stored at a sub-zero temperature in our seed bank vault.

    Nine collections of Gagnebina commersoniana seeds are held in Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank based at Wakehurst in West Sussex.

    Further information on  Gagnebina commersoniana seeds can be found on Kew’s Seed Information Database.

    This species at Kew

    Gagnebina commersoniana is grown in Kew’s behind-the-scenes Tropical Nursery.

    Pressed and dried specimens of Gagnebina commersoniana are held in Kew’s Herbarium, where they are available to researchers from around the world, by appointment. The details of some of these, including images, can be seen online in Kew’s Herbarium Catalogue.

    View details and images of specimens

    Distribution
    Madagascar
    Ecology
    Thickets, secondary vegetation, shrubby savannah and dry woodlands.
    Conservation
    Least Concern (LC) according to IUCN Red List criteria.
    Hazards

    None known.

    Images

    Distribution

    Found In:

    Madagascar

    Common Names

    Malagasy
    Alimboro

    Gagnebina commersoniana (Baill.) R.Vig. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Identified Reference Herbarium Specimen Type Status
    Jun 22, 1984 Baron, R. [4730], Madagascar K000232264 Unknown type material
    Jun 22, 1984 Baron, R. [4730], Madagascar K000232265
    Boivin [2759], Madagascar K000232266 isolectotype

    First published in Notul. Syst. (Paris) 13: 346 (1949)

    Accepted in:

    • [4] Govaerts, R. (2003) World Checklist of Seed Plants Database in ACCESS G: 1-40325

    Literature

    • [1] Contu, S. (2010). Gagnebina commersoniana. Sampled Red List Index (SRLI) Project. Assessment using IUCN Categories and Criteria 3.1 (IUCN 2001). Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • [2] Moat, J. & Smith, P. (2007). Atlas of the Vegetation of Madagascar. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

    • [3] Lewis, G., Schrire, B., Mackinder, B. & Lock, M. (2005). Legumes of the World. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • [5] Du Puy, D. J., Labat, J.-N., Rabevohitra, R., Villiers, J.-F., Bosser, J. & Moat, J. (2002). The Leguminosae of Madagascar. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • [6] Du Puy, D.J., Labat, N.-N., Rabevohitra, R., Villiers, J.-F., Bosser, J. & Moat, J. (2002) The Leguminosae of Madagascar . Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
    • [7] Lewis, G. P. & Guinet, P. (1986). Notes on Gagnebina (Leguminosae: Mimosoideae) in Madagascar and neighbouring islands. Kew Bulletin 41: 463–470.

    Sources

    International Plant Names Index
    The International Plant Names Index (2016). Published on the Internet http://www.ipni.org
    [A] © Copyright 2016 International Plant Names Index. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Species Profiles
    Kew Species Profiles
    [B] http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
    [C]

    World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
    World Checklist of Selected Plant Families(2016). Published on the Internet http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    [D] See http://kew.org/about-kew/website-information/legal-notices/index.htm You may use data on these Terms and Conditions and on further condition that: The data is not used for commercial purposes; You may copy and retain data solely for scholarly, educational or research purposes; You may not publish our data, except for small extracts provided for illustrative purposes and duly acknowledged; You acknowledge the source of the data by the words "With the permission of the Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew" in a position which is reasonably prominent in view of your use of the data; Any other use of data or any other content from this website may only be made with our prior written agreement. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0
    [E] © Copyright 2016 International Plant Names Index and World Checkist of Selected Plant Families. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0