Skip to main content
  1. Family: Solanaceae Juss.
    1. Genus: Solanum L.
      1. Solanum taitense Vatke

        This species is accepted, and its native range is Kenya to S. Tropical Africa, Arabian Peninsula.


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

    Type: Kenya, Teita District, between Ndi and Tsavo River, Hildebrandt 2605 (B†, holo.; GOET!, lecto., designated by Vorontsova & Knapp in Taxon 59: 1600, 2010)
    Erect or scandent subshrub, 0.3–1.5 m, usually unarmed; young stems densely stellate-pubescent, trichomes porrect, reddish-translucent or yellow-translucent, stalked, stalks up to 0.1 mm, rays ± 8, 0.1–0.2 mm, midpoints shorter than rays; prickles curved, up to 1(–2) mm long, 0.2–0.5 mm wide at base
    Leaf blades drying concolorous to weakly discolorous, yellow-green to red-green, ovate to elliptic, 1.2–3(–3.5) × 0.6–1.3 cm, 2–3 times longer than wide, base rounded to obtuse, sometimes cordate, usually equal, margin entire to subentire, apex rounded; densely stellate-pubescent on both sides, trichomes on abaxial surface porrect, stalked, stalks 0.1–0.15 mm, rays ± 8, 0.1–0.25 mm, midpoints ± same length as rays or shorter, adaxially with thick stalks and reduced rays; primary veins 3–5 pairs; petiole 0.3–0.8 cm, 1/4–1/6 of the leaf length
    Inflorescences not branched, 1.2–2 cm long, with 1–2(–3) flowers; peduncle absent; rachis absent; peduncle and rachis unarmed; pedicels 0.7–1 cm long, in fruit 1.3–1.6 cm long, unarmed
    Flowers perfect, 5-merous
    Calyx 4–5 mm long, lobes deltate, 2–3.5 mm long, acute to acuminate, unarmed
    Corolla white to mauve, 1–1.7 cm in diameter, lobed for ± 4/5 of its length, lobes lanceolate to oblong, 4.5–7 × 1.5–2 mm
    Stamens equal; anthers 4–6 mm
    Ovary densely stellatepubescent in upper 1/5; style 6–10 mm long
    Berries 1–2 per infructescence, red at maturity, spherical, 6–10 mm in diameter
    Seeds ± 3 × 2.6 mm
    Bushland and grassland on sandy or black clay soil; 0–1500 m
    Solanum taitense is an unremarkable shrub recognised by its apically rounded subentire leaves, sparse inconspicuous prickles under 1(–2) mm long, frequent branching, rarely more than 2 flowers per inflorescence, and relatively small corollas and short anthers. Trichomes on the adaxial sides of the leaf have short, dilated stalks, and rays are reduced in size and point upwards. Solanum taitense occurs within the distribution range of S. hastifolium and identification can be difficult due to the variable nature of S. hastifolium. No single morphological character separates all the specimens, but Solanum taitense has the majority of the following: entire to subentire leaves, inconspicuous prickles up to 1(–2) mm long, 1–2(–3) flowers per inflorescence, corolla 1–1.7 cm in diameter.
    Flora districts: K3 K4 K6 K7 T1 T3 Range: Not known elsewhere



    Native to:

    Kenya, Mozambique, Saudi Arabia, Tanzania, Zambia

    Other Data

    Solanum taitense Vatke appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Greenway, P.J. [9822], Kenya K001158065
    Gillett, J.B. [19519], Kenya K001158081
    Gillett, J.B. [16421], Kenya K001158089
    Bally, P.R.O. [16625], Kenya K001158083
    Bally, P.R.O. [1623], Kenya K001158085
    Polhill, R. [480], Kenya K001158070
    Polhill, R. [480], Kenya K001158075
    Polhill, R. [547], Kenya K001158080
    Rogers, C.G. [73], Kenya K001158087
    Robertson, S.A. [1413], Ethiopia K001170346
    Verdcourt [2666], Kenya K001158092
    Luke, Q. [259], Kenya K001158082
    Luke, Q. [743], Kenya K001158088
    Luke, P.A. [6216], Kenya K001158090
    Abdallah, R. [96/216], Tanzania K001158068
    Abdallah, R. [96/216], Tanzania K001158072
    Haarer, A.E. [1388], Tanzania K001158067
    Kässner [472] K001158066
    Festo, L. [2285], Kenya K001158077
    Ament, J. [221], Kenya K001158074
    Drummond, R.B. [4268], Kenya K001158071
    s.coll [132], Kenya K001158076
    s.coll [3503], Kenya K001158086
    Nganga, S.K. [55], Kenya K001158073
    Verdcout [2545], Kenya K001158078
    Huges, F. [s.n.], Kenya K001158079
    Waita, T. [68], Kenya K001158084


    First published in Linnaea 43: 327 (1882)

    Accepted by

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


    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • K.T.S.L.: 582 (1994).
    • Blundell, Wild Fl. E. Africa: 191 (1992)
    • T.T.C.L.: 580 (1949)
    • F.T.A. 4, 2: 226 (1906)
    • Linnaea 43: 327 (1882)


    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
    'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.