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  1. Family: Solanaceae Juss.
    1. Genus: Solanum L.
      1. Solanum macrocarpon L.

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Tropical Africa, Comoros.

    [FZ]

    Flora Zambesiaca. Vol. 8, Part 4. Solanaceae. Gonçalves AE. 2005

    General
    Erect, often much branched, annual to perennial herb or shrub to 1. 5 m high, armed or rarely unarmed in some cultivars; hairs stellate, long stalked to sessile, long-radiate, sometimes with a long ray and occasionally appearing simple, rarely absent except for a few minute, simple, glandular hairs when young; prickles straw-coloured becoming fuscous upwards, to 18 mm long, straight, subulate from a ± broad base, glabrous
    Calyx
    Calyx densely clothed with ± stalked and long-radiate stellate hairs to glabrous, ± prickly or unarmed, in fruit strongly enlarged, appressed to and often enveloping it, very prickly; tube 3–4 cm long, campanulate; lobes foliaceous, 8–15 mm long, elongating to 4 cm in fruit, lanceolate-subulate, sub-acuminate Calyx densely clothed with ± stalked and long-radiate stellate hairs to glabrous, ± prickly or unarmed, in fruit strongly enlarged, appressed to and often enveloping it, very prickly; tube 3–4 cm long, campanulate; lobes foliaceous, 8–15 mm long, elongating to 4 cm in fruit, lanceolate-subulate, sub-acuminate.
    Corolla
    Corolla bluish to purple or occasionally white, 1. 6–2.5 cm across, broadly campanulate to rotate-stelliform; lobes broadly triangular, abruptly ending in a short, hairy mucro, densely clothed with long-radiate hairs on the median region outside and with a few stellate hairs on the midrib to quite glabrous inside Corolla bluish to purple or occasionally white, 1.6–2.5 cm across, broadly campanulate to rotate-stelliform; lobes broadly triangular, abruptly ending in a short, hairy mucro, densely clothed with long-radiate hairs on the median region outside and with a few stellate hairs on the midrib to quite glabrous inside.
    Stamens
    Stamen filaments 1–2 mm long; anthers 5–8 mm long, oblong to lanceolate in outline or broadly lanceolate-ellipsoid, emarginate at both ends or cordate basally Stamen filaments 1–2 mm long; anthers 5–8 mm long, oblong to lanceolate in outline or broadly lanceolate-ellipsoid, emarginate at both ends or cordate basally.
    Ovary
    Ovary 1. 5–2.5 mm in diameter, ± globose, glabrous except for a few sparse, minute, glandular hairs near the top, 4–6-locular.
    Style
    Style 7–10 mm long, much shorter in male flowers, ± robust, recurved to the apex, sparsely hairy often with a few uniradiate hairs and also or only with a few glandular ones near the base
    Fruits
    Fruit ± glossy, at first green-white, later yellow, golden-yellow or orange-yellow, 3–4 cm in diameter or 3–4 × 3.5–4.5 cm, globose or depressed-globose, glabrous, bitter but edible in some cultivars when cooked Fruit ± glossy, at first green-white, later yellow, golden-yellow or orange-yellow, 3–4 cm in diameter or 3–4 × 3.5–4.5 cm, globose or depressed-globose, glabrous, bitter but edible in some cultivars when cooked.
    Seeds
    Seeds pale yellow-brown or yellowish, 3–4 × 2.5–3 mm, oblique or flattened lenticular, subreniform, conspicuously or minutely reticulate all over Seeds pale yellow-brown or yellowish, 3–4 × 2.5–3 mm, oblique or flattened lenticular, subreniform, conspicuously or minutely reticulate all over.
    Note
    Chromosome number: 2n=24 Heine, loc. cit. (1963), was of the opinion that S. macrocarpon should probably be regarded as a cultivated glabrous form of the wild S. dasyphyllum, perhaps with hybrid swarms between the two "species". Later Omidiji in Nigerian Agric. J. 13, 1 (1976), referring to the close relationship between them, suggested that they should be conspecific. Then Bukenya in an unpublished M.Sc. thesis (1980), concluded that the two taxa were one only, proposing the name S. macrocarpon; see also Bukenya & Carasco in E. Afr. Agric. For. J. 59: 187–204 (1994). Jaeger, loc. cit. (1985), considered two subspecies within S. macrocarpon sensu lato, subsp. macrocarpon for the cultivated forms and subsp. dasyphyllum for the wild plant, though not recognizing geographical separation or definitive morphological limits between them. J.B. Hall & Bukenya in pers. comm. (fide Jaeger & Hepper in D'Arcy, op. cit: 49 (1986)), studying material from Ghana, concluded that S. macrocarpon should be considered a domesticated form of S. dasyphyllum, both of them intergrading morphologically thus having to be considered conspecific. Recently the same authors in Bothalia, loc. cit. (1987), recognized and described six cultivars and the putative wild ancestor within S. macrocarpon complex, considering the variation displayed attributable to genotypic differences and environmental factors. Taking notice of the several authors cited and considering the unsatisfactory separation of S. macrocarpon from S. dasyphyllum on the basis of the latter being prickly and hairy and the former unarmed and glabrous, I think they should be one species alone under the name S. macrocarpon. See also Lester & Daunay, loc. cit. (2003). Dammer, loc. cit. (1895), recorded S. duplosinuatum from Mozambique N: "Moçambique" and Z: Quelimane Distr., Quelimane. Other Mozambique records not seen by me include Peters s.n., from Nampula Prov. (mainland coast and Moçambique Is.), referred by Klotzsch, loc. cit. (1861) and C.H. Wright, loc. cit. (1906), to S. duplosinuatum, and by Bitter, tom. cit.: 191 (1923), to S. dasyphyllum, and Stuhlmann 136, from Zambezia Prov. (Quelimane), referred also by Bitter, tom. cit.: 191 (1923), to S. dasyphyllum. Binns, loc. cit. (1968), records S. macrocarpon from Malawi, C: Nkhotakota (Nkhota Kota).
    Ecology
    Evergreen forest edges, floodplains, riverbanks, cultivated ground, in ± dry or sometimes moist situations; up to 1765 m.
    Distribution
    ZAM B, ZAM W, ZIM N, ZIM C, MAL S, MOZ T, MOZ MS Malawi Widespread throughout tropical and subtropical Africa, recorded from the Canary, S. Tomé, Príncipe and Annobón Islands, from West to East Africa extending northwards to Egypt and southwards throughout East Africa to South Africa (KwaZulu-Natal); also from Zimbabwe Mozambique Zambia
    Habit
    Erect, often much branched, annual to perennial herb or shrub to 1.5 m high, armed or rarely unarmed in some cultivars; hairs stellate, long stalked to sessile, long-radiate, sometimes with a long ray and occasionally appearing simple, rarely absent except for a few minute, simple, glandular hairs when young; prickles straw-coloured becoming fuscous upwards, to 18 mm long, straight, subulate from a ± broad base, glabrous.
    Branches
    Branches sometimes dark purple, with dense to sparse indumentum and generally with scattered prickles. Branches sometimes dark purple, with dense to sparse indumentum and generally with scattered prickles
    Leaves
    Leaves solitary, sometimes purple tinged, sessile or with a short petiole, occasionally up to 5 cm long; lamina ± membranous, (5)6–35(41) × (2)3–22(25) cm, ovate to obovate, base broadly cuneate to attenuate and ± unequal-sided, long-decurrent into the petiole, but sometimes not decurrent lower down on the branches, apex ± acute, ± deeply sinuate-pinnatifid to sinuate-repand, the lobes ± triangular or ovate-triangular to ± lanceolate, deeply lobulate to entire, rounded or obtuse, rarely acute, the sinuses rounded between the lobes, conspicuously hairy at first, the hairs only persisting above on the midrib and secondary nerves, unequally radiate, setose or lacking, ± dense or scattered beneath, ± long and robustly stalked, finely and pauciradiate, ± prickly mainly on midrib and secondary nerves, more densely so beneath, to quite unarmed. Leaves solitary, sometimes purple tinged, sessile or with a short petiole, occasionally up to 5 cm long; lamina ± membranous, (5)6–35(41) × (2)3–22(25) cm, ovate to obovate, base broadly cuneate to attenuate and ± unequal-sided, long-decurrent into the petiole, but sometimes not decurrent lower down on the branches, apex ± acute, ± deeply sinuate-pinnatifid to sinuate-repand, the lobes ± triangular or ovate-triangular to ± lanceolate, deeply lobulate to entire, rounded or obtuse, rarely acute, the sinuses rounded between the lobes, conspicuously hairy at first, the hairs only persisting above on the midrib and secondary nerves, unequally radiate, setose or lacking, ± dense or scattered beneath, ± long and robustly stalked, finely and pauciradiate, ± prickly mainly on midrib and secondary nerves, more densely so beneath, to quite unarmed
    Inflorescences
    Cymes lateral, unbranched, sub-umbelliform or racemiform, 2–6-flowered, usually the lowest flower(s) larger and more prickly, sometimes all flowers unarmed, sometimes flowers solitary; peduncle 0–2 cm long, ± prickly to quite unarmed; pedicels 0.5–3 cm long, slender but somewhat stout in fertile flowers, ± prickly or unarmed, erect or ± curved, in fruit elongated to 4 cm, strongly thickened chiefly distally and robust, recurved or deflexed. Cymes lateral, unbranched, sub-umbelliform or racemiform, 2–6-flowered, usually the lowest flower(s) larger and more prickly, sometimes all flowers unarmed, sometimes flowers solitary; peduncle 0–2 cm long, ± prickly to quite unarmed; pedicels 0.5–3 cm long, slender but somewhat stout in fertile flowers, ± prickly or unarmed, erect or ± curved, in fruit elongated to 4 cm, strongly thickened chiefly distally and robust, recurved or deflexed
    Flowers
    Flowers 5(6)-merous. Flowers 5(6)-merous
    Pistil
    Ovary 1.5–2.5 mm in diameter, ± globose, glabrous except for a few sparse, minute, glandular hairs near the top, 4–6-locular; style 7–10 mm long, much shorter in male flowers, ± robust, recurved to the apex, sparsely hairy often with a few uniradiate hairs and also or only with a few glandular ones near the base.
    Cytology
    Chromosome number: 2n=24.
    [FTEA]

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

    Type
    Type: Hort. Uppsala s.n. (LINN 248.11!, lecto., designated by Hepper & Jaeger, 1985: 391)
    Habit
    Herb or shrub, 0.3–1 m, erect, unarmed or with a few prickles; young stems almost glabrous, often with minute orange glands
    Leaves
    Leaf blades drying concolorous, distinctive red-brown, elliptic, 10–35 × 6–20 cm, ± 2 times longer than wide, base attenuate(cuneate), usually equal, margin lobed to subentire, the lobes 3–5 on each side, 1–7 cm long, apically obtuse to rounded, extending 1/3–2/3 of the distance to the midvein, usually with extensive secondary lobing; apex obtuse; primary veins 5–8 pairs; petiole often decurrent (0–2.5 cm), usually less than 1/7 of the leaf length
    Inflorescences
    Inflorescences not branched, 3–5 cm long, with 1–10 flowers; peduncle 0–5 mm long; rachis 0.4–4 cm long; pedicels 1–3 cm long and stout in long-styled flowers, 0.6–1.5 cm and slender in short-styled flowers, in fruit 1–4 cm long
    Flowers
    Flowers heterostylous, 5-merous, basal one long-styled
    Calyx
    Calyx 12–35 mm on long-styled flowers, 6–20 mm long on short-styled flowers, lobes deltate, 6–30 mm on longstyled flowers, 4–10 mm long on short-styled flowers, acute to long-acuminate, unarmed or with a few prickles
    Corolla
    Corolla white to purple, 3.5–5 cm in diameter on long-styled flowers, 1.2–2.5 cm in diameter on short-styled flowers, lobed for 1/4–1/2 of its length, lobes broadly deltate, 5–10 × 10–20 mm on long-styled flowers, 4–10 × 7–10 mm on short-styled flowers. Stamens equal; anthers 4–7 mm
    Ovary
    Ovary with simple hairs on the upper 1/2; style ± 10 mm long on long-styled flowers
    Fruits
    Berries 1(–2) per infructescence, striped when young, yellow to orange (white or almost black) at maturity, spherical, 4–6 cm in diameter; fruiting calyx with occasional prickles
    Seeds
    Seeds 2.8–3.8 × 2.2–3.2 mm
    Ecology
    Cultivated species: “Gboma eggplant”
    Note
    Cultivated for its fruits and as a leaf vegetable. The attenuate leaf bases, long calyx lobes covering the developing fruit, and an easily recognisable red-black drying colour are distinguishing features. Solanum macrocarpon can be confused with the leaf vegetable varieties of S. aethiopicum due to their similar rounded-lobed dark red leaves; it can be distinguished by the absence of clear petioles, attenuate leaf bases and fruit more than 4 cm in diameter. It is now widely accepted that S. macrocarpon is the cultivated form of the wild S. dasyphyllum. The distinction between the cultivated S. macrocarpon and the wild S. dasyphyllum is largely artificial and maintained here for practical purposes. Solanum macrocarpon can be distinguished from S. dasyphyllum by the absence of prickles and indumentum, and fruit more than 4 cm in diameter. Solanum macrocarpon generally has smaller leaves, leaves that are less lobed, and lobes more rounded than S. dasyphyllum.
    Distribution
    Range: Probably cultivated throughout Africa, but collections are sporadic: Sierra Leone, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central African Republic, Congo-Kinshasa, Ethiopia, Angola Flora districts: U K T Range: Egypt, Guatemala, Brazil
    [FWTA]

    Solanaceae, H. heine. Flora of West Tropical Africa 2. 1963

    Habit
    Half-woody usually unarmed undershrub with rather stout branches up to 5 ft. high
    Indumentum
    Hairy or sometimes glabrescent
    Flowers
    Flowers 3/4-1 in. diam., white or bluish-purple
    Note
    Often cultivated.

    Images

    Distribution

    Native to:

    Angola, Benin, Cameroon, Central African Repu, Comoros, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gulf of Guinea Is., Ivory Coast, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

    Introduced into:

    Egypt, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mauritius, Réunion

    Synonyms

    Other Data

    Solanum macrocarpon L. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Jun 4, 2009 Meyer, F.G. [8762], Ethiopia K000441503
    Jun 4, 2009 Meyer, F.G. [7790], Ethiopia K000441504
    Jun 4, 2009 Ebbe, J. [598], Ethiopia K000441505
    Apr 24, 2009 Fay, J.M. [5424], Central African Republic K000441483
    Apr 24, 2009 Anonymous [s.n.] K000441486
    Apr 24, 2009 Johns, T. [86504], Gabon K000441484
    Apr 24, 2009 Bequaert, J.C.C. [2371], Congo K000441485
    Feb 12, 1977 Van Epenhuijsen, C.W. [37], Nigeria K000212456
    Jan 1, 1961 Ogu [0 s.n.], Cameroon K000028643
    Dec 1, 1958 Irvine, F.R. [3605], Nigeria K000212454
    Deighton, F.C. [2868], Sierra Leone 16656.000
    Deighton, F.C. [2866], Sierra Leone 16657.000
    Deighton, F.C. [1803], Sierra Leone K000212445
    Deighton, F.C. [1803], Sierra Leone K000212446
    Deighton, F.C. [1803], Sierra Leone K000212447
    Dalziel, J.M. [1189], Nigeria K000212455
    Eyles, F. [2151], Zimbabwe K001158639
    Hepper, F.N. [4498], Sri Lanka K001169247
    Hepper, F.N. [8701], United Kingdom K001169250
    Trapnell, C.G. [1451], Zambia K001158640
    Trapnell, C.G. [1241], Zambia K001158641
    Maitland, T.D. [82], Uganda K001157742
    Maitland, T.D. [676], Uganda K001157743
    Maitland, T.D. [676], Uganda K001157744
    Gossweiler [8371], Angola K001158642
    Haerdi, F. [52/92], Tanzania K001157751
    Hooker [2], Madagascar K000212373
    Balfour, I.B. [s.n.], Madagascar K000212371
    Hall [47137], Ghana K000212436
    Hall [47103], Ghana K000212437
    Hall [47103], Ghana K000212438
    Hall [47138], Ghana K000212439
    Hall [47132], Ghana K000212440
    Hall [47123], Ghana K000212441
    Hall [47124], Ghana K000212442
    Hall [47128], Ghana K000212443
    Hall [47133], Ghana K000212444
    Last [s.n.], United Kingdom K001169252
    Whyte, A. [s.n.], Uganda K001157749
    Buchanan, J. [1054], Malawi K001158638
    Tessman, G. [577], Equatorial Guinea K000414035 isotype
    Thomas, N.W. [991], Sierra Leone K000212449
    Thomas, N.W. [1635], Sierra Leone K000212450
    Thomas, N.W. [1162], Sierra Leone K000212451
    Thomas, N.W. [2063], Sierra Leone K000212452
    Irvine, F.R. [5494], Ghana K000212457
    Irvine, F.R. [5495], Ghana K000212458
    Irvine, F.R. [4686], Ghana K000212459
    Gumbleton [s.n.] K001169253
    Katende, A.B. [K97], Uganda K001157750
    Haniff, M. [s.n.], Singapore K001153260
    Haniff, M. [s.n.], Singapore K001153262
    Westphal, E. [9785], Cameroon K001169246
    Wit, P. [164], Nigeria K000212460
    Thornewill, A.S. [95], Nigeria K000212453
    Purseglove, J.W. [P1757], Uganda K001157741
    Purseglove, J.W. [P1893], Uganda K001157745
    Purseglove, J.W. [P1861], Uganda K001157747
    s.coll [33], Egypt K001169248
    s.coll [s.n.] K001169249
    s.coll [31] K001169251
    s.coll [s.n.] K001169254
    s.coll [D41], Uganda K001157748
    s.coll. [s.n.], Madagascar K000212372
    Johns, T. [480], Cameroon K001155953
    Fisher, J.D. [94], Sierra Leone K000212448
    Milsum, J.N. [37420], Malaysia K001153261
    Daumlira, E.K. [D41], Uganda K001157746
    Deighton, F.C. [2867], Sierra Leone Solanum duplo-sinuatum 18756.000
    s.coll [2789], Indonesia Solanum duplo-sinuatum K001153396

    Bibliography

    First published in Mant. Pl.: 205 (1771)

    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 West Tropical Africa

    • Burkill in Kew Bull. 1925: 333.
    • Bitter in Fedde Rep., Beih. 16: 195 (1923)
    • incl. var. calvum Bitter in Fedde Rep., Beih. 16: 198 (1923), and other varieties
    • F.T.A. 4, 2: 214
    • Mant. Alt. 205 (1771)

    Flora Zambesiaca

    • Knüpffer & Ochsmann (eds.), Rudolf Mansfeld and Plant Genetic Resources, Schriften Genet. Ressourcen 22: 137 (2003). Habitat in Peru.
    • Belmontia 22: 213, t. 5.35, phot. 5.26 (1990).
    • Bothalia 18: 84 (1988).
    • Bothalia 17: 91–95 cum t. 1–4 & phot. 1–6 (1987)
    • D'Arcy, Solanac. Biol. & Syst.: 475 (1986).
    • D'Arcy, Solanac. Biol. & Syst.: 48, 49 (1986).
    • Kew Bull. 40: 389 (1985).
    • Jaeger, Syst. Stud. Solanum in Afr.: 425 (1985) incl. subsp. dasyphyllum (Schumach. & Thonn.) Jaeger and subsp. macrocarpon.
    • Gentes Herb. 12: 263 (1984).
    • Hepper, W. Afr. Herb. Isert & Thonn.: 121 (1976).
    • Binns, First Check List Herb. Fl. Malawi: 98 (1968).
    • Bull. Jard. Bot. État 33, Suppl.: 871 (1963).
    • F.W.T.A., ed. 2, 2: 334 (1963).
    • Brenan & Greenway, Check-list For. Trees Shrubs Tang. Terr.: 586 (1949).
    • Bull. Misc. Inform., Kew 1925: 333 (1925).
    • Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. Beih. 16: 195 (1923) as “macrocarpum”.
    • T. & H. Durand, Syll. Fl. Congol.: 393 (1909).
    • F.T.A. 4, 2: 214 (1906).
    • A. de Candolle, Prodr. 13, 1: 353 (1852).
    • Mant. Pl. Alt.: 205 (1771).

    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Fl. Eth. 5: 137 (2006).
    • F.Z. 8(4): 105 (2005)
    • F.W.T.A. 2nd ed., 2: 334 (1963)
    • T.T.C.L.: 586 (1949)
    • F.T.A. 4, 2: 214 (1906)
    • Mant. Pl. Altera: 205 (1771)

    Sources

    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca
    http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

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

    Flora of West Tropical Africa
    Flora of West Tropical 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