Genus:
Cucumis L.

Cucumis metulifer E.Mey. ex Naudin

This species is accepted, and its native range is Tropical & S. Africa, SW. Arabian Peninsula.

[FWTA]

Cucurbitaceae, Hutchinson and Dalziel. Flora of West Tropical Africa 1:1. 1954

Morphology General Habit
A yellow-flowered annual climber
Morphology Leaves
Foliage like that of the cucumber
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit pendulous, scarlet when ripe, with stout spines.

[FSOM]

M. Thulin et al. Flora of Somalia, Vol. 1-4 [updated 2008] https://plants.jstor.org/collection/FLOS

Morphology General Habit
Trailing or scandent annual herb to 5 m; stems densely setose
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-blade ovate to broadly ovate, deeply cordate, sinuate-deticulate, hispid-setulose becoming scabrid-punctate, 3.5–12 x 3.5–13.5 cm, palmately usually shortly (3–)5-lobed, lobes broadly triangular to ovate or elliptic; petiole 2–11.5 cm long, densely patent-setose
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Monoecious
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Hypanthium
Hypanthium 3.5–6 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Sepals filiform, 1.5–5 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Petals yellow, 6–13 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Female flowers solitary Male flowers solitary or in 2–10-flowered clusters
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Ovary
Ovary ellipsoid, 9.5–25 mm long, covered with large soft spines
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Perianth
Perianth as in male flowers
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit oblong-cylindrical, rounded at the ends, 6.5–13 x 3.5–6.5 cm, covered with stout fleshy spines, mottled green, bright red when ripe
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Pedicel
Pedicel 2–7 cm long, little or not expanded towards the apex Pedicels 0.5–3.5 cm long Pedicels 3–16 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds narrowly ovate in outline, 5–9 mm long, fibrillose.
Distribution
S3 tropical Africa, Yemen, sometimes cultivated.
Ecology
Altitude c. 100 m.

[FTEA]

Cucurbitaceae, C. Jeffrey. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1967

Morphology General Habit
Annual climbing or trailing herb; stem hispid with spreading hairs.
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-blade broadly ovate-cordate in outline, hispid-hairy especially on the nerves beneath, sinuate-toothed, 32–90 mm. long, 43–100 mm. broad, unlobed or usually palmately 3–5-lobed; lobes triangular or rounded, less often ovate, obtuse to rounded and apiculate; petioles long-spreading hispid-hairy, 37–100 mm. long.
sex Male
Male flowers 1–4 in sessile or up to 10 mm. pedunculate groups; pedicels 2–18 mm. long; receptacle-tube pale green, 3–6 mm. long; lobes filiform, 1.5–4 mm. long; petals yellow, 6–13 mm. long, 2–8 mm. broad, united in lower third.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Female flowers on 20–60 mm. long stalks; ovary pale green with numerous large darker green fleshy spines each tipped by a broad-based hair, 10–26 mm. long, 3.5–12 mm. across; receptacle-tube 3–5 mm. long; lobes filiform, 2–4 mm. long; petals 8–15 mm. long, 4–10 mm. broad, united below. Male flowers 1–4 in sessile or up to 10 mm. pedunculate groups; pedicels 2–18 mm. long; receptacle-tube pale green, 3–6 mm. long; lobes filiform, 1.5–4 mm. long; petals yellow, 6–13 mm. long, 2–8 mm. broad, united in lower third.
sex Female
Female flowers on 20–60 mm. long stalks; ovary pale green with numerous large darker green fleshy spines each tipped by a broad-based hair, 10–26 mm. long, 3.5–12 mm. across; receptacle-tube 3–5 mm. long; lobes filiform, 2–4 mm. long; petals 8–15 mm. long, 4–10 mm. broad, united below.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit on a stout 20–60 mm. long stalk, which is not expanded upwards, ellipsoid-cylindrical, obscurely trigonous, 60–110 mm. long, 30–61 mm. across, spiny with rather stout broad-based scattered fleshy spines each tipped with a broad-based bristle, deep greenish grey becoming orange-red with obscure longitudinal stripes of small pale markings, rather softly fleshy.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds elliptic in outline, 7–9 × 3.5–4 × 1–1.5 mm.
Habitat
Deciduous woodland and bushland, wooded grassland and grassland; 820–1800 m.
Distribution
north tropical Africa from Nigeria eastwards to the Sudan Republic and Ethiopia, also Congo Republic, south tropical Africa, Transvaal, Natal, South West Africasometimes cultivated elsewhere K2 T3 T4 T5 T7 T8 U1

[FZ]

Cucurbitaceae, C. Jeffrey. Flora Zambesiaca 4. 1978

Morphology General Habit
Annual; stems prostrate or scandent, to 5 m., strongly patent-setose.
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-lamina 3·5–12 × 3·5–13·5 cm., ovate to broadly ovate or subpentagonal in outline, cordate, hispid-setulose especially on veins beneath, becoming scabrid-punctate, margins sinuate-denticulate, palmately and usually rather shortly (3)5-lobed, lobes shallowly triangular to ovate or broadly elliptic, rounded to subacute, shortly acuminate, apiculate, very rarely lobulate; basal sinus deep, broad, subrectangular.
Morphology Leaves Petiole
Petiole 2–11·5 cm. long, strongly patent-setulose.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers monoecious. Female flowers solitary, sometimes co-axillary with male; pedicel 5–35 mm. long; ovary 9·5–25 × 7·5–10 mm., ellipsoid, covered with large soft spines; perianth similar to that of male flower. male flowers solitary or 2–10 in usually sessile fascicles; pedicels 3–16 mm. long. Receptacle-tube 3·5–6 mm. long, lobes 1·5–mm. long. Petals 3–11 mm. long, yellow or pale orange.
sex Male
male flowers solitary or 2–10 in usually sessile fascicles; pedicels 3–16 mm. long. Receptacle-tube 3·5–6 mm. long, lobes 1·5–mm. long. Petals 3–11 mm. long, yellow or pale orange.
sex Female
Female flowers solitary, sometimes co-axillary with male; pedicel 5–35 mm. long; ovary 9·5–25 × 7·5–10 mm., ellipsoid, covered with large soft spines; perianth similar to that of male flower.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit 6·5–13 × 3·5–6·5 cm., oblong-cylindric, rounded at the ends, bluntly trigonous, ornamented with stout fleshy spines, dark green mottled paler grey-green or yellow, becoming bright red when ripe; fruit-stalk 2–7 cm. long, strongly spiculate, ridged, not or only slightly expanded at the apex.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds 5·1–7·4 × 3·0–3·7 × 1·0–1·1 mm., narrowly ovate in outline, compressed, with rounded margins and depressed or slightly convex faces, smooth, sericeous-fibrillose.

Native to:

Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina, Cameroon, Central African Repu, Chad, Ethiopia, Gabon, Guinea, Gulf of Guinea Is., Ivory Coast, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Northern Provinces, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Yemen, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Introduced into:

Alabama, Florida, Queensland, Venezuela

English
Bitter wild cucumber, Horned cucumber, Jelly melon

Cucumis metulifer E.Mey. ex Naudin appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status Has image?
May 1, 2002 Alison [66], Botswana K000809268 No
May 1, 2001 Alison [655], Botswana K000809267 No
Jan 1, 1996 Carvalho [4060], Equatorial Guinea K000731910 No
Jan 1, 1995 Carvalho [4060], Equatorial Guinea K000731909 No
Jan 1, 1973 Brummitt, R.K. [10300], Malawi K000809266 No
Tweedie, E.M. [2037], Kenya 1719.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [11224], Tanzania 18786.000 No
Tanzania 32842.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [11302A], Tanzania 4629.000 No
Kerfoot, O. [3604], Uganda 6934.000 No
Hemming, C.F. [2011], Somalia 8083.000 No
Tweedie [2067], Kenya 8084.000 No
Kolberg, H. [589], Namibia K000809279 No
Renvoize, S.A. [2140], Tanzania 64031.000 No
Hobson, S.R. [2045], Swaziland K000809278 No

First published in Ann. Sci. Nat., Bot., sér. 4, 11: 10 (1859)

Accepted by

  • Akoègninou, A., van der Burg, W.J. & van der Maesen, L.J.G. (eds.) (2006). Flore Analytique du Bénin: 1-1034. Backhuys Publishers.
  • Darbyshire, I., Kordofani, M., Farag, I., Candiga, R. & Pickering, H. (eds.) (2015). The Plants of Sudan and South Sudan: 1-400. Kew publishing, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Edwards, S., Tadesse, M. & Hedberg, I. (eds.) (1995). Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea 2(2): 1-456. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia & The Department of Systematic Botany, Upps.
  • Figueiredo, E. & Smith, G.F. (2008). Plants of Angola Strelitzia 22: 1-279. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.
  • Figueiredo, E., Paiva, J., Stévart, T., Oliveira, F. & Smith, G.F. (2011). Annotated catalogue of the flowering plants of São Tomé and Príncipe Bothalia, A Journal of Botanical Research 41: 41-82.
  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee (2015). Flora of North America North of Mexico 6: 1-468. Oxford University Press, New York, Oxford.
  • Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds.) (2003). Plants of Southern Africa an annotated checklist Strelitzia 14: 1-1231. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.
  • Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. MIM, Deurne.
  • Hokche, O., Berry, P.E. & Huber, O. (eds.) (2008). Nuevo Catálogo de la Flora Vascular de Venezuela: 1-859. Fundación Instituto Botánico de Venezuela.
  • Hutchinson, J., Dalziel, J.M. & Keay, R.W.J. (1954-1958). Flora of West Tropical Africa, ed. 2, 1: 1-828.
  • Jeffrey, C. (1967). Flora of Tropical East Africa, Cucurbitaceae: 1-156.
  • Keraudren-Aymonin, M. (1975). Flore d'Afrique Centrale (Zaire-rwanda-Burundi), Cucurbitaceae: 1-152. Jardin Botanique National de Belgique.
  • Kral, R., Diamond, A.R., Ginzbarg, S.L., Hansen, C.J., Haynes, R.R., Keener, B.R., Lelong, M.G., Spaulding, D.D. & Woods, M. (2011). Annotated checklist of the vascular plants of Alabama: 1-112. Botanical reseach institute of Texas.
  • Launert, E. (ed.) (1978). Flora Zambesiaca 4: 1-658. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Lebrun, J.-P., Audru, J., Gaston, A. & Mosnier, M. (1972). Catalogue des Plantes Vasculaires du Tchad Méridional: 1-289. Institut d' Elevage et de Médecine Vétérinaire des Pays Tropicaux, Maisons Alfort.
  • Lejoy, J., Ndjele, M.-B. & Geerinck, D. (2010). Catalogue-flore des plantes vasculaires des districts de Kisangani et de la Tshopo (RD Congo) Taxonomania 30: 1-307.
  • Peyre de Fabregues, B. & Lebrun, J.-P. (1976). Catalogue des Plantes Vascularies du Niger: 1-433. Institut d' Elevage et de Médecine Vétérinaire des Pays Tropicaux, Maisons Alfort.
  • Thulin, M. (ed.) (1993). Flora of Somalia 1: 1-493. The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Wood, J.R.I. (1997). A handbook of the Yemen Flora: 1-434. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Literature

Flora of West Tropical Africa

  • Chev. Bot. 292.
  • Cogn. & Harms in Engl. Pflanzenr. Cucurbit. 2: 146
  • —F.T.A. 2: 543

Kew Backbone Distributions

  • Akoègninou, A., van der Burg, W.J. & van der Maesen, L.J.G. (eds.) (2006). Flore Analytique du Bénin: 1-1034. Backhuys Publishers.
  • Figueiredo, E., Paiva, J., Stévart, T., Oliveira, F. & Smith, G.F. (2011). Annotated catalogue of the flowering plants of São Tomé and Príncipe Bothalia, A Journal of Botanical Research 41: 41-82.
  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee (2015). Flora of North America North of Mexico 6: 1-468. Oxford University Press, New York, Oxford.
  • Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds.) (2003). Plants of Southern Africa an annotated checklist Strelitzia 14: 1-1231. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.
  • Hokche, O., Berry, P.E. & Huber, O. (eds.) (2008). Nuevo Catálogo de la Flora Vascular de Venezuela: 1-859. Fundación Instituto Botánico de Venezuela.
  • Hutchinson, J., Dalziel, J.M. & Keay, R.W.J. (1954-1958). Flora of West Tropical Africa, ed. 2, 1: 1-828.
  • Kral, R., Diamond, A.R., Ginzbarg, S.L., Hansen, C.J., Haynes, R.R., Keener, B.R., Lelong, M.G., Spaulding, D.D. & Woods, M. (2011). Annotated checklist of the vascular plants of Alabama: 1-112. Botanical reseach institute of Texas.
  • Lebrun, J.-P., Audru, J., Gaston, A. & Mosnier, M. (1972). Catalogue des Plantes Vasculaires du Tchad Méridional: 1-289. Institut d' Elevage et de Médecine Vétérinaire des Pays Tropicaux, Maisons Alfort.
  • Peyre de Fabregues, B. & Lebrun, J.-P. (1976). Catalogue des Plantes Vascularies du Niger: 1-433. Institut d' Elevage et de Médecine Vétérinaire des Pays Tropicaux, Maisons Alfort.
  • Thulin, M. (ed.) (1993). Flora of Somalia 1: 1-493. The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Flora of Somalia

  • Flora Somalia, Vol 1, (1993) Author: by C. Jeffrey & M. Thulin [updated by M. Thulin 2008]

Flora of Tropical East Africa

  • A. Meeuse in Bothalia 8: 68 (1962).
  • Burtt Davy, Man. Fl. Pl. Ferns Transv. 1: 228 (1926).
  • Exell, Cat. Vase. Pl. S. Tomé: 186 (1944).
  • F. W. Andr., The Flowering Plants of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 1: 172 (1950).
  • Hiern, Cat. Welw. Afr. Pl. 2: 397 (1898).
  • Hook. f. in Flora of Tropical Africa 2: 543 (1871).
  • Hutch. & Dalz., Flora of West Tropical Africa 1: 182 (1927)
  • Keay, Flora of West Tropical Africa ed. 2, 1: 213 (1954).
  • Naud. in Ann. Sc. Nat., sér. 4, 11: 10 (1859).
  • R. & A. Fernandes in Mem. Junta Invest. Ultram., sér. 2, 34: 94 (1962).
  • Sonder in Fl. Cap. 2: 495 (1862).
  • Stuhlmann in Deutsch Ost-Afrika 10: 137 (1909).

  • Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora Zambesiaca
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  • Flora of Somalia

    Flora of Somalia
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  • 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

  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2022. 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

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