Barleria L.

Barleria aromatica Oberm.

This species is accepted, and its native range is Zimbabwe.


Flora Zambesiaca Acanthaceae (part 2) by Iain Darbyshire, Kaj Vollesen and Ensermu Kelbessa

Morphology General Habit
Bushy perennial herb 60–90(150) cm tall, aromatic; stems with mixed short white spreading or retrorse hairs and long coarse pale-buff to golden-yellow hairs, appressed or ascending at first but spreading on older stems; uppermost internodes sometimes glandular-pubescent.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves often immature at flowering, elliptic, ovate or oblong, 1–4.2 × 0.5–2.2 cm, base obtuse or rounded, margin revolute when young, apex acute to rounded, apiculate, surfaces with buff to golden-yellow coarse appressed or ascending hairs, longest and most dense on veins beneath, often with finer and more spreading hairs between veins; lateral veins 3–4 pairs, prominent beneath; petiole 0–3 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence axillary, 1(2)-flowered, on patent or spreading-ascending peduncles 13–42 mm long, hairs as on stems, short spreading glandular hairs usually present; bracteoles variously ovate or elliptic to linear, 2–6.5(10) × 1–2(5) mm, margin entire, apex often recurved, apiculate; pedicels 0–6 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx green or pinkish at first with darker reticulate venation, later turning scarious; outer lobes subequal, elliptic, oblong or lanceolate, 9.5–14.5(21) × 2.5–6.5 mm, margin entire, often involute, apex acute to attenuate, apiculate, anterior lobe sometimes notched, surfaces buff- to yellow-strigose, usually with scattered short spreading glandular hairs; lateral lobes lanceolate, 9–13.5(16) mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla 31–48 mm long, mauve or rarely white to pale pink, sometimes with yellow throat, pubescent externally with mixed eglandular and glandular hairs; tube cylindrical, 17–28.5 mm long; limb in 2+3 arrangement; abaxial lobe 14–23 × 11–17(21) mm; lateral lobes 12–21 × 11–15(20) mm; adaxial lobes as laterals but 7–11(14) mm wide.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens attached 10–16 mm from base of corolla tube; filaments 20–29 mm long; anthers exserted, 3.5–5 mm long; lateral staminodes 4–8 mm long, sparsely hairy at base, apex clavate, antherodes undeveloped.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Ovary
Ovary with tuft of deflexed hairs at apex and extending onto style base, distal portion of style with minute spreading glandular hairs; stigma subcapitate or clavate, 0.4–0.8 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Capsule 17–21 mm long, glabrous except apical tuft of hairs.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds (–immature) c.6 × 5 mm.
Not known elsewhere.
Open rocky hillslopes, often over serpentine deposits, but also recorded from granite outcrops; 1000–1600 m.
Conservation notes: Endemic to Zimbabwe and known from at least 10 localities; mining is likely to have resulted in loss of some populations although mine-spoil may create favourable conditions; Near Threatened.

Native to:


Barleria aromatica Oberm. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Ann. Transvaal Mus. 15: 169 (1933)

Accepted by

  • Darbyshire, I., Vollesen, K. & Kelbessa, E. (2015). Flora Zambesiaca 8(6): 1-314. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Govaerts, R. (1996). World Checklist of Seed Plants 2(1, 2): 1-492. MIM, Deurne.


Flora Zambesiaca

  • in Ann. Transv. Mus. 15: 169 (1933).
  • —Tredgold & Biegel, Zimb. Wild Fl.: 52, pl.35 (1996).

  • Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora Zambesiaca

  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2022. 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 2022. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.