Skip to main content
This species is accepted, and its native range is Brazil (Bahia).


Harley, R.M. 2014. Four new taxa of Oocephalus (Hyptidinae: Lamiaceae) from Bahia, Brazil. Kew Bulletin 69: 9539. DOI

Known only from two collections, where very few individuals were observed, in the same general area, in an area sparsely inhabited but with a history of local mining activity. It fulfils the conditions to be assessed as Critically Endangered (IUCN 2001).
South America: NE Brazil. Bahia, Chapada Diamantina. At present known only from two adjacent localities.
Near gallery forest margin and with shrubs in campo rupestre vegetation.
Morphology General Habit
Elongate, lanky, aromatic shrub 1 – 2.5 m with long stems, occasionally branched from the base; stems weakly quadrangular, densely white-lanate
Morphology Leaves
Leaves aromatic, cauline strongly coriaceous, with lamina 40 − 50 × 40 − 50 mm, usually as broad as long, rotund to broadly ovate, apex broadly rotund, base cordate, sessile, clasping the stem, adaxial surface at first with caducous white-lanate indumentum soon becoming glabrous, green and glossy, with thickened cuticle (becoming dark green in herbarium material), rugose to bullate, with very sparse, small glands, secondary venation not apparent, abaxial surface paler and densely white-lanate, obscuring venation, margin coarsely crenate, with teeth partially revolute
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers sessile to pedicellate with pedicels to 1.5 mm long, hairy, calyx tubular to very narrowly infundibuliform, c. 5 mm long at anthesis, tube 3 mm long, outer surface densely hairy and with scattered sessile glands, glabrous within, apart from a dense ring of erect, whitish hairs at throat of calyx
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx lobes 5, subequal, 2 mm long, narrowly triangular with long, narrowly subulate apex, calyx in fruit 6 – 7 mm long, tube 3.5 – 4.5 mm, cylindrical-campanulate, lobes vinaceous, 2.3 – 3 mm long, hygroscopic, erect when moist, spreading when dry, the ring of erect hairs fringing calyx throat, also becoming patent
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla purplish to deep lilac, with tube 5 − 7 mm long, slender, densely hairy on external surface, long-exserted from calyx tube, widening above and slightly curved below, lobes rather short, stamen filaments lilac, pilose, anthers vinaceous with pollen golden yellow, style lilac to vinaceous, weakly clavate at apex and appearing unlobed
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Nutlets c. 1.3 × 0.7 – 0.8 mm., oblong and ellipsoid to weakly trigonous, apex rounded, dark brown, smooth to obscurely striatulate, glabrous, not mucilaginous when wet
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence elongate, spike-like, 30 − 40 cm long, long-interrupted especially below, and composed of many-flowered, congested cymules, the lower remote, with internodes between them <30 – 50 mm long; cymules c. 10 − 15 mm diam., broadly ovoid, capituliform, becoming subglobose in fruit, sessile or very shortly pedunculate from axils of small leaf-like bracts which diminish in size towards apex of stem, much shorter than internodes; bracteoles forming an involucre at base of cymules, the outer 5 – 6 × 2 – 2.5 mm, ovate-elliptic to lanceolate, concave to ± flat, slightly acuminate at apex, adaxial surface glabrous and abaxial surface lanate, inner bracteoles narrower, <7 × 0.5 – 1.0 mm
A most distinctive species, Oocephalusganevii differs from all previously described species of Oocephalus by the thickly dense white-lanate indumentum on stems and leaf under-surfaces, the upper leaf surfaces strongly rugose, with evanescent indumentum, becoming dark, glossy green, with the leaves rotund to broadly ovate, base cordate, sessile, with elongate, long-interrupted inflorescences <40 cm long, calyx lobes spreading in fruit. Among other species of Oocephalus, it might perhaps be confused with the other new species, described below, O. rigens Harley, to which it appears to be related. Both species have ± rotund leaves, sessile in C. ganevii and with a short petiole 2 – 3 mm long in O. rigens.

The present species also differs in its white-lanate indumentum, which is shortly grey-tomentose in O. rigens, and the very elongate spike-like inflorescences up to 40 cm long, much shorter and more congested, and only up to 20 cm long in O. rigens. Flowers with calyx 5 mm long and lobes 2 mm long at anthesis, compared with O. rigens with calyx tube c. 6 mm long, and lobes 2.5 – 3 long at anthesis; fruiting calyx 6 – 7 mm long in O. ganevii and 8 – 8.5 mm long in O. rigens, the calyx lobes of O. ganevii widely spreading in fruit. The only other species with a white-lanate indumentum on stems and leaves is O. niveus (Epling) Harley & J. F. B. Pastore from Goiás. In this species, however, the trichomes are shorter and appressed and occur on both sides of the leaf, and the sessile leaves are ovate to ovate-oblong and never rugose.

Named for its discoverer, Wilson Ganev, formerly of Catolés, whose extensive collections in the Abaira area include many previously unknown species.

Since writing the above, another collection, which may prove to be this species, was made in Bahia, Município de Piatã: estrada nova, aonorte de Piatã, indo para a Comunidade Rural de Rio de Contas, 13°07'24.3""S, 41°46'00.4""W, alt. 1230 m, 4 Feb. 2014. Harley & Pastore 56953 (HUEFS). The plants, which were not in flower, were found at the base of a rocky slope in some profusion, growing among shrubs and grasses. Young leaves were present together with the previous season’s dead and fragmented inflorescences. The habit, leaf-shape and characteristic spreading calyx-lobes were noted. The plants, however, although with hirsute stems and leaves, lacked the characteristic lanate indumentum. Whether this develops later, or whether its absence represents a difference from the earlier material remains to be seen. It will be important to collect further material when in better condition.


Flowering Aug. − Sept.; fruiting Sept.

Type: Brazil. Bahia: Município de Rio de Contas. Rio de ÁguaSuja, caminhoJaqueiro — passagem de Arapiranga, 13°48'S, 42°25'W, alt. 950 m, campo rupestre, com capões de mata de encosta, 28 Aug. 1993, Ganev 2139 (holotype HUEFS!, isotype K!).

Native to:

Brazil Northeast

Oocephalus ganevii Harley appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Kew Bull. 69(4)-9539: 2 (2014)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R., Nic Lughadha, E., Black, N., Turner, R. & Paton, A. (2021). The World Checklist of Vascular Plants, a continuously updated resource for exploring global plant diversity. Scientific Data 8: 215.

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Kew Bulletin
Kew Bulletin

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.