Genus:
Cucumis L.

Cucumis hirsutus Sond.

This species is accepted, and its native range is Cameroon to Sudan and S. Africa.

[FZ]

Cucurbitaceae, C. Jeffrey. Flora Zambesiaca 4. 1978

Morphology General Habit
Perennial; rootstock fibrous, woody; stems prostrate or scandent, to 2·5 m., sparsely to densely patent-setulose, becoming thickened and woody at the base.
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-lamina 2–15 × 1–10 cm., broadly ovate or ovate-triangular to narrowly ovate, elliptic or oblong-lanceolate in outline, hastate, weakly cordate, truncate or rounded at the base, obscurely and minutely sinuate-denticulate to coarsely sinuate-serrate, usually rather densely hispid or setulose becoming scabrid-punctate above, densely finely setulose to scabrid-setulose or scabrid-punctate beneath, obtuse to acute, apiculate, unlobed or variously palmately 3–5-lobed, lobes ovate-triangular to linear, the central much the largest.
Morphology Leaves Petiole
Petiole 0·5–5·5 cm. long, more or less patent-setulose or hispid.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers dioecious. Female flowers solitary or paired; pedicel 7–26 mm. long; ovary 9–13 × 4–12 mm., ellipsoid or ovoid-ellipsoid, densely appressed- or patent-setulose; perianth similar to that of male flower, the petals rather larger, 13–31 mm. long. male flowers solitary or 2–12 in lax or contracted sessile or pedunculate fascicles; peduncle 2–80 mm. long; pedicels 3–73 mm. long. Receptacle-tube 2·7–9 mm. long; lobes 1–9 mm. long. Petals 3·5–22 mm. long, white, cream, pale yellow or yellow.
sex Male
male flowers solitary or 2–12 in lax or contracted sessile or pedunculate fascicles; peduncle 2–80 mm. long; pedicels 3–73 mm. long. Receptacle-tube 2·7–9 mm. long; lobes 1–9 mm. long. Petals 3·5–22 mm. long, white, cream, pale yellow or yellow.
sex Female
Female flowers solitary or paired; pedicel 7–26 mm. long; ovary 9–13 × 4–12 mm., ellipsoid or ovoid-ellipsoid, densely appressed- or patent-setulose; perianth similar to that of male flower, the petals rather larger, 13–31 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit 2·5–7 × 1·5–6 cm., globose to oblong-ellipsoid, rounded at the ends, smooth, longitudinally striped light and dark green becoming concolorous yellow and finally brownish-orange when ripe; fruit-stalk 1·8–6·2 cm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds 6·5–9 × 4·9–6·3 × 2·1–3·2 mm., ovate in outline, smooth, compressed, not bordered, white.

[FTEA]

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

Morphology General Habit
Coarse trailing perennial herb to 2.5 m.; rootstock large, woody; stems shortly and finely to long and coarsely spreading-hairy, like the leaves often darkening when dried.
Morphology Leaves
Leaf-blade ovate, ovate-triangular, elongated-ovate, elliptic or lanceolate in outline, unequally sinuate-toothed or sometimes serrate-lobulate, subtruncate or subcordate at the base, ± softly- to very scabrid-hairy, especially beneath, 12–143 mm. long, 10–95 mm. broad, unlobed or variously shortly 3(–5)-lobed, with the central lobe much the longest; petiole ± spreading-bristly, 3–55 mm. long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Dioecious. Male flowers in sessile or 1–47 mm. pedunculate groups of 2–14, usually with a coaxillary solitary flower, occasionally solitary; pedicels 4–60 mm. long; receptacle-tube 3.5–7 mm. long; lobes ± linear, 1.5–9 mm. long; petals pale yellow with green veins, 6–21 mm. long, 3.5–13 mm. broad, united at the base. Female flowers 1–2(–3) on 11–23 mm. long stalks; ovary ellipsoid, 8–10 mm. long, 3–6 mm. across, densely hairy; receptacle-tube ± 4 mm. long and 3.5–4 mm. across; lobes subulate, 1.5–2 mm. long; petals 7–10 mm. long, 3.5–5 mm. broad, united at the base.
sex Male
Male flowers in sessile or 1–47 mm. pedunculate groups of 2–14, usually with a coaxillary solitary flower, occasionally solitary; pedicels 4–60 mm. long; receptacle-tube 3.5–7 mm. long; lobes ± linear, 1.5–9 mm. long; petals pale yellow with green veins, 6–21 mm. long, 3.5–13 mm. broad, united at the base.
sex Female
Female flowers 1–2(–3) on 11–23 mm. long stalks; ovary ellipsoid, 8–10 mm. long, 3–6 mm. across, densely hairy; receptacle-tube ± 4 mm. long and 3.5–4 mm. across; lobes subulate, 1.5–2 mm. long; petals 7–10 mm. long, 3.5–5 mm. broad, united at the base.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit on a 20–39 mm. long stalk, subglobose, 40–47 mm. long, 37–42 mm. across, green with darker mottlings, irregularly primrose-yellow and finally brownish-orange when ripe, smooth.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds (fig. 16/10, p. 101) ovate in outline, lenticular, 7 × 5 × 2 mm.
Habitat
Deciduous woodland and bushland, grassland, also becoming a weed of old cultivated ground; 30–1500 m.
Distribution
south-eastern Congo Republic, south tropical Africa, and South Africa K4 T1 T2 T3 T4 T5 T6 T7 T8

Native to:

Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Provinces, Congo, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Malawi, Mozambique, Northern Provinces, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Cucumis hirsutus Sond. appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status Has image?
Mar 1, 1998 Schmidt, H.H. [1282], Tanzania K000809265 No
Jan 1, 1986 Paterson, A. [430], Congo K000731903 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [10538], Tanzania 16139.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [3075 A], Zambia 16140.000 No
Wild, H. [40804], Zimbabwe 1713.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [3003], Zambia 1715.000 No
Wild, H. [44872], Zimbabwe 1716.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [7800], Tanzania 1717.000 No
Wild, H. [41817], Zimbabwe 1720.000 No
Milne-Redhead, E. [8880], Tanzania 8079.000 No
K000311067 Unknown type material Yes
Burke [297], South Africa K000311068 Unknown type material Yes
Burke [297], South Africa K000311069 Unknown type material Yes
Smith, P.P. [761], Zambia K000809277 No

First published in W.H.Harvey & auct. suc. (eds.), Fl. Cap. 2: 497 (1862)

Accepted by

  • Figueiredo, E. & Smith, G.F. (2008). Plants of Angola Strelitzia 22: 1-279. National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Launert, E. (ed.) (1978). Flora Zambesiaca 4: 1-658. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Onana, J.M. (2011). The vascular plants of Cameroon a taxonomic checklist with IUCN assessments: 1-195. National herbarium of Cameroon, Yaoundé.

Literature

Kew Backbone Distributions

  • Onana, J.M. (2011). The vascular plants of Cameroon a taxonomic checklist with IUCN assessments: 1-195. National herbarium of Cameroon, Yaoundé.

Flora of Tropical East Africa

  • A. Meeuse in Bothalia 8: 63 (1962).
  • F. W. Andr., The Flowering Plants of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 1: 172 (1950).
  • Hook. f. in Flora of Tropical Africa 2: 546 (1871).
  • Keraudren, Fl. Madag. Cucurbitac: 143 (1966).
  • R. & A. Fernandes in Mem. Junta Invest. Ultram., sér. 2, 34: 85 (1962).
  • Sond. in Fl. Cap. 2: 497 (1862).

  • Flora Zambesiaca

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  • Flora of Tropical East Africa

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