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This species is accepted, and its native range is N. Mozambique.


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

sp. nov. Differs from B. mutabilis in the bracteoles being broadly elliptic to suborbicular, 7.5–17.5 mm wide (vs. linear, oblanceolate or narrowly elliptic, 0.5–4.5 mm wide), and in the posterior calyx lobe being markedly larger and broader than the anterior lobe and sometimes partially enveloping it (vs. outer calyx lobes subequal, the posterior lobe only marginally larger).
Morphology General Habit
Shrub 100–200 cm tall; stems with dense golden long-armed stellate hairs, stellate base sometimes falling early, arm 0.5–1.3 mm long.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves broadly ovate, 2–8 × 2–4.8 cm, base subcordate or rounded, apex obtuse, acute or shortly attenuate, surfaces densely golden-hairy, hairs long-armed stellate or simple; lateral veins 5–6 pairs, these and reticulate tertiary venation prominent beneath; petiole 0–8 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescences axillary but clustered towards stem apex, forming a terminal thyrse with reduced foliaceous bracts, each cyme contracted and strobilate, 3–8-flowered, unilateral or becoming branched at maturity, sessile or primary peduncle to 7.5 mm long; bracteoles broadly elliptic to suborbicular, 9.5–23 × 7.5–17.5 mm, apex obtuse to attenuate with a conspicuous mucro; flowers sessile.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx papery, green at first with a purple-brown apex, soon turning brown-purple scarious; anterior lobe suborbicular or broadly elliptic, 14–19 × 12–16 mm, base obtuse, rounded or cordate, margin irregularly dentate, somewhat undulate, apex obtuse or rounded, surface with golden long-armed stellate or mixed stellate and simple hairs, most numerous on veins; posterior lobe suborbicular 16–25 × 17–25 mm, margin often involute and partially enveloping anterior lobe; lateral lobes lanceolate-attenuate, 9–15.5 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla 37–44 mm long, lilac or blue, pilose eternally with mixed glandular and eglandular hairs; tube cylindrical, 21–22 mm long, curved below attachment point of stamens; limb in 2+3 arrangement; abaxial and lateral lobes 12–19 × 10–15 mm; adaxial lobes 7.5–10 × 5–8 mm.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens attached in distal half of corolla tube; filaments 16–20 mm long; anthers 4.5–5 mm long; lateral staminodes c.3.5 mm long, pubescent, antherodes obsolete or poorly developed, to 0.8 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Ovary
Ovary with apical tuft of hairs; style pubescent towards base; stigma clavate, 0.6–0.7 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Capsule c.17.5 mm long, with few pale hairs towards apex.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Only immature seeds seen.
Not known elsewhere.
Open forest, wooded slopes above river, and abandoned cultivated land; 1100–1200 m.
Conservation notes: Endemic to Niassa Province in Mozambique and known from only the three cited specimens plus a photographic record taken by Meg Coates-Palgrave in May 2009 at Simanje R. near Lichinga, while Torre recorded it as widespread at Maniamba; best considered as Data Deficient.

Native to:


Barleria torrei I.Darbysh. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Fl. Zambes. 8(6): 66 (2015)

Accepted by

  • Darbyshire, I., Vollesen, K. & Kelbessa, E. (2015). Flora Zambesiaca 8(6): 1-314. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca

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 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.