Skip to main content
  1. Family: Solanaceae Juss.
    1. Genus: Solanum L.
      1. Solanum polhillii Voronts.

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Kenya to Tanzania.

    [FTEA]

    Solanaceae, Jennifer M Edmonds. Oliganthes, Melongena & Monodolichopus, Maria S. Vorontsova & Sandra Knapp. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2012

    Type
    Type: Kenya, Masai District, Ewaso Ngiro–Loliondo road where it crosses the Masan River, Verdcourt 3838 (EA!, holo.; K!, iso.)
    General
    Erect to semi-scandent shrub, 1–2 m, armed or unarmed; young stems sparsely to densely stellate-pubescent; trichomes porrect, translucent, stalked, stalks up to 0.2 mm, rays 7–9, 0.1–0.2 mm, midpoints same length as rays or shorter, often reduced to globular glands; prickles straight (curved), 2–3(–6) mm long, 0.5–1.5 mm wide at base
    Leaves
    Leaf blades drying discolorous, yellow-green, ovate, 2–6 × 1–4 cm, 1.5–2 times longer than wide, base cordate (rounded or cuneate), often oblique, margin entire to weakly lobed, the lobes if present 1–2 on each side, broadly rounded and up to 3 mm long, extending up to 1/4 of the distance to the midvein; apex rounded or obtuse; densely stellate-pubescent on both sides, trichomes on abaxial surface porrect, stalked, stalks to 0.2 mm, rays ± 8, 0.1–0.3 mm, midpoints same length as rays or shorter, adaxially with reduced rays pointed upwards; primary veins 3–4 pairs; petiole 0.3–2.5 cm, 1/3–2/3 of the leaf length
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescences not branched, 2–4.5 cm long, with 1–3(–4) flowers; peduncle 0–5 mm long; rachis 0–2 cm long; peduncle and rachis unarmed or with 1–3 prickles; pedicels 1–1.5 cm long in flower, in fruit 0.8–4 cm long, unarmed or with up to 15 prickles. Flowers heterostylous, 5-merous, the basal 1–2 long-styled
    Calyx
    Calyx 8–16 mm long, lobes long-deltate to oblong, 4.5–12 mm long, long-acuminate, usually unarmed. Corolla mauve to purple, 2–4.2 cm in diameter, lobed for 2/3–3/4 of its length, lobes ovate to elliptic, 7–15 × 4.5–10 mm
    Stamens
    Stamens equal; anthers 4.5–8 mm
    Ovary
    Ovary densely stellate-pubescent; style 8–12 mm long on long-styled flowers
    Fruits
    Berries 1(–2) per infructescence, striped when young, yellow to orange at maturity, spherical, 13–20 mm in diameter; fruiting calyx usually unarmed
    Seeds
    Seeds 2.8–3 × 2–2.5 mm
    Ecology
    Savanna, rocky hillsides, bushland and scrub, on granite, volcanic rocks or red sandy soil; 1800–2200 m
    Note
    Morphology, including leaf size, petiole length and prickliness, varies with environmental conditions such as aridity, nutrient availability, and herbivory. Particularly remarkable is the variation in flower size, with the corolla 2–4.2 cm wide and the anthers 4.5–8 mm long, smaller than the more southern S. richardii but larger than most other species in the region. Limited populations of Solanum polhillii remain in some dry upland areas but severe habitat loss has been documented, partly due to grazing (Vorontsova et al. in Syst. Bot. 35: 894–906. 2010).   Solanum polhillii is intermediate between the morphologically defined sections Oliganthes and Melongena due to its limited andromonoecy and medium-sized fruits. In spite of vegetative similarity to members of section Oliganthes, its fruits are yellow rather than orange to red and its flowers are too large to fit comfortably into that group.
    Distribution
    Range: Not known elsewhere Flora districts: K3 K4 K6 T1 T2

    Images

    Distribution

    Native to:

    Kenya, Tanzania

    Other Data

    Solanum polhillii Voronts. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Oct 1, 2010 Verdcourt, B. [2672], Kenya K000441224
    May 1, 2009 Greenway, P.J. [10677], Tanzania K000441237
    May 1, 2009 Bally, P.R.O. [B4745], Kenya K000441246
    May 1, 2009 Bally, P.R.O. [B2333], Kenya K000441247
    May 1, 2009 Archer, P.G. [117], Kenya K000441238
    May 1, 2009 Archer, P.G. [434], Kenya K000441248
    May 1, 2009 Archer, P.G. [208], Kenya K000441252
    May 1, 2009 Napier, E.R. [1339], Kenya K000441228
    May 1, 2009 Gilbert, M.G. [5961], Kenya K000441241
    May 1, 2009 Gilbert, M.G. [4933], Kenya K000441245
    May 1, 2009 Glover, P.E. [2908], Kenya K000441229
    May 1, 2009 Glover, P.E. [2736], Kenya K000441235
    May 1, 2009 Glover, P.E. [3605], Kenya K000441251
    May 1, 2009 Luke, P.A. [7317], Kenya K000441236
    May 1, 2009 Newbould, J.G.B. [6267], Tanzania K000441225
    May 1, 2009 Kerfoot, O. [1860], Kenya K000441227
    May 1, 2009 Kerfoot, O. [4001], Kenya K000441242
    May 1, 2009 Kerfoot, O. [3393], Kenya K000441244
    May 1, 2009 Paulo, S. [377], Tanzania K000441233
    May 1, 2009 Oteke, J. [228], Tanzania K000441249
    Nov 11, 2008 Napier, E.R. [6724], Kenya K000441240
    Nov 11, 2008 Bogdan, A. [1474], Kenya K000441250
    Oct 23, 2008 Greenway, P.J. [14952], Tanzania K000441232
    Oct 23, 2008 Bally, P.R.O. [B12657], Kenya K000441230
    Oct 23, 2008 Carter, S. [333], Kenya K000441231
    Oct 22, 2008 Napier, E.R. [6723], Kenya K000441226

    Bibliography

    First published in Syst. Bot. 35(4): 902 (2010)

    Accepted by

    • PBI Solanum Project (2014-continuously updated). Solanaceae Source: a global taxonomic resource for the nightshade family http://www.solanaceaesource.org/.

    Literature

    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Syst. Bot. 35: 902 (2010).

    Sources

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
    'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet http://www.kew.org/herbcat [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0