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

[FSOM]

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

Morphology Stem
Aerial stem to c. 2 m high, leafy throughout or with ring-like leaf scars at the base
Morphology Leaves
Leaves many, in 2 ranks, spreading, recurved, 24–70 x up to 3 cm, slightly rough, rounded on the back, with a concave channel all along above, gradually tapering to the hard pale brown very acute spine-like tip, without markings; margins of channel with a narrow red-brown line edged with white
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Panicle to c. 0.5 m high, with ascending-spreading branches; flowers 4–6 in a cluster, greenish-white with dull purple lines; pedicels 2–3 mm long, articulated at or slightly above the middle
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Tepal
Free parts of tepals c. 10 mm long, linear, obtuse; tube c. 6 mm long.
Distribution
S1–3; Kenya
Ecology
Altitude range 0–200 m.

[FTEA]

Dracenaceae, Geoffrey Mwachala & Paul Mbugua, Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2007

Morphology General Habit
Erect frutescent herb, rhizome subterranean, 1.7–2.4 cm thick; stem erect, terete, 100–200 cm long, (2.5–)3–5(–6) cm in diameter, stout, leafy especially the top three quarters of the plant, in some juvenile populations half of the plant is leafy, marked with ring-like scars for ± 15–30(–50) cm from the base; internodes 2–3 cm long, light brown-grey
Morphology Leaves
Leaves distichous to spiral-distichous, 25–35(–40), very stiff, spreading to slightly recurved from half length, rounded to keeled on the back, 35–55(–60) cm long, 4–5(–6) cm wide, 1–2 cm thick, smooth to slightly rough, base sheathed, gradually tapering to a apical spine, horny pale brown with dark brown-red base, very sharp; deep channel from base to apex and as broad as the leaf; margin narrow redbrown edged with grey-white membrane widest towards leaf base, faintly glaucous; very faint markings but not banded, grass-green to greenish grey (when dehydrated) dark bluish green with age, numerous veins on abaxial surface
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence a panicle with 20–25(–30) branches, peduncle (45–)70–100(–120) cm long, 0.5–1 cm wide; branches up to 60 cm long near base of inflorescence and much shorter above, ascending-spreading, lower branches bear 3–10 branchlets; main stalk rough basally; bracts 0.1–0.2 cm long, fleshy, convex with a membranous acute apex; nectar exudes from bract bases; lower inflorescence bracts lanceolate, 0.5–1.7 cm long, acute, horny apex, 0.2 cm long; lower inflorescence bracteoles are thick, brownish grey but towards inflorescence apex are membranous and greyish-white, margins greyishwhite also; flowers 4–6; pedicels 0.1–0.2 cm long, jointed at or slightly below the middle
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers dingy greenish white with dull brownish purple slender lines outside, perianth 1–1.6 cm long; tube 0.6 cm long, 0.2 cm wide above the slightly swollen base; lobes linear, (0.6–)0.9–1 cm long, obtuse; anthers 0.2 cm long, pale greenish yellow; style 1–1.1 cm long; stigma globose; ovary 0.2 cm wide
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit 1–2 per pedicel with the double being joined to each other at base, a globose orange berry 0.5–0.7 cm diameter.
Distribution
Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia
Ecology
Dry bushland, scattered tree grassland; 0–550(–1350) m
Conservation
Least concern
Note
The protologue by Brown reads: “Although near allied to {i}S. caulescens {/i}N.E.Br. and resembling it in appearance, it is easily distinguished by the channel of the leaves being as broad as the full width of the leaf and by its paniculate (not spike-like) inflorescence”. This is not correct in my view as {i}S. caulescens{/i}, for example, is not quite frutescent nor does it ever produce distichous fibrous light grey-green leaves. {i}S. powellii {/i}is also a larger plant in all aspects. It has been hypothesized by Chahinian and Pfennig (pers. comm.) that {i}S. powellii {/i}is a hybrid between {i}S. robusta {/i}and {i}S. arborescens{/i}. This seems plausible, but it is yet to be proved experimentally since no {i}S. arborescens {/i}were observed in most of the areas where {i}S. powellii {/i}was growing. It might be that offspring colonised totally new areas i.e. intermediate altitudes. {i}S. robusta {/i}for example was mainly found at mid to high altitudes, {i}S. arborescens {/i}was predominantly ator near sea level, while {i}S. powellii {/i}occupies the areas in between. This species may easily be distinguished from {i}S. bagamoyensis {/i}by its shorter and wider leaves with very sharp spines. The stem is generally longer and thicker with a deep brownish-orange colour on the internodes. Leaves on herbarium sheets are greyish brown, very stiff, more fibrous and with deep longitudinal surface folds. Specimens from Ethiopia tend to have very many double and triple fruits. This may be an indicator that there may be a more effective pollinator agent(s) in that area compared to other regions.

[FTEA]
Use
Making ropes by Amer people of Sudan

Native to:

Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania

Dracaena powellii (N.E.Br.) Byng & Christenh. appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Oct 27, 1994 Burger, W. [1063], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203236
Oct 27, 1994 Burger, W. [1063], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203237
Oct 27, 1994 Burger, W. [665], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203239
Oct 27, 1994 Ash, J. [1718], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203240
Oct 27, 1994 B.K.C. [B.K.C.251], Sudan Sansevieria powellii K000203235
Oct 27, 1994 Burger, W. [665], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203238
Oct 27, 1994 Alstrup, V. [160], Somalia Sansevieria powellii K000203243
Oct 21, 1994 Luke, Q.C. [TPR754], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203357
Oct 21, 1994 Luke, Q.C. [TPR770], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203356
Apr 2, 1986 Gillett, J.B. [19970], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203351
Apr 2, 1986 Gillett, J.B. [19970], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203352
Apr 2, 1986 Gillett, J.B. [19970], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000204177
Nov 16, 1983 Bally [B14977], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203358
Nov 16, 1983 Robertson, S.A. [2103], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203359
Nov 16, 1983 Gillett, J.B. [13387], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203360
Nov 16, 1983 Gillett, J.B. [13387], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000204184
Nov 16, 1983 Gillett, J.B. [13387], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203361
Drummond, R.B. [3733], Tanzania Sansevieria powellii 22399.000
Bally, P.R.O. [7785], Kenya Sansevieria powellii 24251.000
Ash [1718], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii 35918.000
Powell [5], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000255761 Unknown type material
Powell [5], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000255762
Powell [5], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000255763 Unknown type material
Powell [5], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000255765 Unknown type material
Powell [5], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000255764 Unknown type material
Powell [D], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203349
Powell [D], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203350
Bally, P.R.O. [7785], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203353
Powell [D], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000204324
Bally, P.R.O. [7785], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000204203
Powell [D], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203348
Bally, P.R.O. [7785], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203355
Drummond, R.B. [3733], Tanzania Sansevieria powellii K000204016
Bally, P.R.O. [7785], Kenya Sansevieria powellii K000203354
Drummond, R.B. [3733], Tanzania Sansevieria powellii K000204015
Sebsebe, D. [2545], Ethiopia Sansevieria powellii K000203241
Rose[...illegivle], R. [1034], Somalia Sansevieria powellii K000203242

First published in Global Fl. 4: 66 (2018)

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

  • Andrews, F.W. (1956). The Flowering Plants of the Sudan 3: 1-579. T.Buncle & co., LTD., Arbroath, Scotland.
  • Mwachala, G. & Mbugua, P.K. (2007). Dracaenaceae Flora of Tropical East Africa: 1-43.
  • Thulin, M. (ed.) (1995). Flora of Somalia 4: 1-298. The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Flora of Somalia
Flora of Somalia
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East 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