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This species is accepted, and its native range is Tropical Africa.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium

[FTEA]

Cyperaceae, K Hoenselaar, B. Verdcourt & H. Beentje. Hypolytrum, D Simpson. Fuirena, M Muasya. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2010

Type
Type: none indicated
Note
Note: the ‘type’ cited in some publications for this taxon: Angola, Pungo Andongo, Tunda Quilombo, Welwitsch 1667 (BM, holo.; K!, iso.) is a specimen cited in the protologue for var. kyllingoides (A. Rich.) Welw. which differs from the description given for the main taxon, protea. Goetghebeur states on a det. slip on the K sheet of this specimen that this sheet, the isotype of what he calls forma kyllingoides, is the ‘lectotype of protea var. protea’. I don’t believe this can be true.
Morphology General Habit
Perennial slender ± tufted herb without runners.
Morphology Stem
Stem obscurely 3-angled, 5–60 cm high, 0.5–2.3 mm across, the base sometimes swollen and often covered by fibrous remains of leaf sheaths
Morphology Leaves
Leaves filiform, 7–26 cm long, with inrolled margins at least when dry, apex attenuate
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts
Involucral bracts 5–10, spreading, 0.5–8 cm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence globose or flattened, 5–40 mm in diameter.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts Glume
Glumes equal or unequal, narrowly ovate, 3–10 mm long, obtuse
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Nutlets dark brown to black, 0.6–1.2 × 0.3–0.6 mm.

[FWTA]

Cyperaceae, Miss S. S. Hooper. Flora of West Tropical Africa 3:2. 1972

Morphology General Habit
Plant with white, often curved, scales in a radiate head about 6–8 mm. across
Ecology
On granite outcrops, in short grass.

[FWTA]

Cyperaceae, Miss S. S. Hooper. Flora of West Tropical Africa 3:2. 1972

Morphology General Habit
Plant with white radiate heads about 35 mm. across
Ecology
In swampy grassland.

[FTEA]

Cyperaceae, K Hoenselaar, B. Verdcourt & H. Beentje. Hypolytrum, D Simpson. Fuirena, M Muasya. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2010

Type
Type: Angola, Benguela, country of Ganguellas and Ambuellas, Gossweiler 3469 (LISJC, holo.; K!, iso.)
Morphology General Habit
Perennial herb, tufted, without runners.
Morphology Stem
Stem 15–60 cm tall, (0.7–)1–2.3 mm in diameter, at base with dark fibrous remains of old leaf sheaths
Morphology Leaves
Leaves to 26 cm long, less than half the length of the culm
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts
Involucral bracts 5–9, narrowly triangular from a base to 5 mm wide, 0.5–5 cm long, with upper margins scabrid
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence yellowish to orange or red, very rarely pale yellow or whitish, ± globose, 8–20 mm across glumes ± equal, elongated, to 3.5 × 0.5 mm, acute
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Nutlets whitish, obovoid, 1.2 × 0.6 mm.
Ecology
Seasonal floodplain, seasonally moist depression; 1550–1700 m
Conservation
Only four specimens from our area; otherwise Least concern (LC)
Distribution
Range: Congo-Kinshasa, Angola, Zambia Flora districts: T4

[FTEA]

Cyperaceae, K Hoenselaar, B. Verdcourt & H. Beentje. Hypolytrum, D Simpson. Fuirena, M Muasya. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2010

Type
Type: Zambia, near Kabwe-Bonanza, Korna? 1559 (KRA, holo.; K!, iso.)
Morphology General Habit
Tufted annual or perennial.
Morphology Stem
Stem 10–50 cm tall, 0.4–1.2 mm across, triangular or compressed Stem bases enclosed in old fibrous leaf sheaths.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves 15–25 cm long, up to 3/4 the length of the stem, ± 1 mm wide, midrib clear on lower surface, margin with minute teeth
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts
Involucre bracts up to 6 cm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence white, 2–4(–5) cm across.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracts Glume
Glumes white, usually with many small red dots, linear, equal, 10–18 × 0.5 mm, long-persistent.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Spikelets
Spikelet bracts 1.5–2.5 mm long, long-acuminate
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens and stylebranches 3
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Nutlet dark purple, ovoid, ± 0.6 mm long. Tuberculate
Ecology
Moist or boggy grassland, said to be common in southern Tanzania; 300–1900 m
Conservation
Least concern (LC).
Note
A. lineariglumis Lye var. pulcherrima Lye is distinct in its bright orange glumes and more bulbous corm base; it is restricted to northern Zambia. Many of our specimens were previously identified as Ascolepis elata Welw., a species from further south.
Distribution
Flora districts: U3 K5 T1 T4 T7 T8 Range: From Nigeria to Sudan and south to Angola, Zimbabwe and Mozambique

Native to:

Angola, Benin, Burkina, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Repu, Chad, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Cyperus proteus (Welw.) Bauters appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
May 1, 1998 Zapfack, L. [1212], Cameroon Ascolepis protea K000678205
Hepper, F.N. [A3094], Ghana Ascolepis protea 28347.000
Jul 16, 1898 Welwitsch [1669], Angola Ascolepis anthemiflora K000416416
Nov 1, 1888 Welwitsch [1670], Angola Ascolepis elata K000416418
Richards, H.M. [8353], Zambia Ascolepis lineariglumis var. pulcherrima K000416425 Unknown type material
Richards, H.M. [8353], Zambia Ascolepis lineariglumis var. pulcherrima K000416424 Unknown type material
Richards, H.M. [8353], Zambia Ascolepis lineariglumis var. pulcherrima K000416423 Unknown type material
Dec 1, 1977 Robinson, E.A. [4893], Tanzania Ascolepis protea var. ochracea K000416398 Unknown type material
Dec 1, 1977 Richards, H.M. [8350], Zambia Ascolepis protea var. ochracea K000416406 Unknown type material
Dec 1, 1977 Robinson, E.A. [4890], Tanzania Ascolepis protea var. ochracea K000416397 Unknown type material
Dec 1, 1977 Gossweiler, J. [3469], Angola Ascolepis protea var. ochracea K000416415 isotype
Dec 1, 1977 Richards, H.M. [8350], Zambia Ascolepis protea var. ochracea K000416407 Unknown type material
Dec 1, 1977 Wild, H. [7684], Zimbabwe Ascolepis protea var. stellata K000416414 isotype
May 1, 1977 Gossweiler, J. [3189], Angola Ascolepis menonguensis K000416426 isotype
Kornas, J. [1559], Zambia Ascolepis lineariglumis K000416422 Unknown type material
Bidgood, S. [5848], Tanzania Ascolepis lineariglumis K000468577
Bidgood, S. [5313], Tanzania Ascolepis lineariglumis K000190543

First published in Phytotaxa 166: 38 (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. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-021-00997-6 Scientific Data 8: 215.

Literature

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.
  • Browning, J. & al. (2020). Flora Zambesiaca 14: 1-455. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Hoenselaar, K., Verdcourt, B. & Beentje, H. (2010). Cyperaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa: 1-466.

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
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. 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

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0