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This species is accepted, and its native range is Cameroon to Ethiopia and NW. Tanzania.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium


Labiatae, J. K. Morton. Flora of West Tropical Africa 2. 1963

Morphology General Habit
A pubescent aromatic shrub several feet high
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Cylindrical spikes of pale blue flowers.


Lamiaceae (Labiatae), A.J. Paton, G. Bramley, O. Ryding, R.M. Polhill, Y.B. Harvey, M. Iwarsson, F. Willis, P.B. Phillipson, K. Balkwill, C.W. Lukhoba, D.F. Otieno, & R.M. Harley. Pycnostachys, G Bramleyshaped. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2009

Lectotype, chosen by Bruce, loc. cit. (1940): Tanzania, west of Lake Victoria, Kanessa, 14 Nov. 1890, Stuhlmann Ser. 4, 943 (B†, lecto.)
Morphology General Habit
Shrub, 1–3 m tall
Morphology Stem
Stems erect, branching, quadrangular, or roundedquadrangular where woodier, pubescent with short downward-pointing eglandular hairs, also with red sessile glands
Morphology Leaves
Leaves opposite, petiolate; blades narrowly ovate to ovate, 4.5–12 × 1.5–7 cm, crenate-serrate, apex acute, base cuneate or roundedto shortly attenuate, both surfaces with red sessile glands, pubescent; petiole 8–40 mm long, pubescent and with red sessile glands
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescence dense, when in flower forming a narrowly conical shape, in fruit 25–40 × 15–20 mm; bracts subtending entire inflorescence narrowly ovate, 10–40 mm long, acute to acuminate, enclosing buds then becoming deflexed in flower, pubescent, persistent through flowering stage; bracts subtending single flowers linear, 4–6 mm long, pubescent
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx with tube ± 1 mm long at anthesis, outer surface with eglandular hairs and scattered red sessile glands, inner surface with 0.5 mm long triangular scales present between calyx lobes; lobes 5, subulate and ± equal, ± 2 mm long, conspicuously tomentose in the lower half; fruiting calyx with tube ± 4 mm long, ventrally gibbous, lobes patent, extending to ± 3 mm long
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla blue to purple, 9–10 mm long, with scattered eglandular hairs and red sessile glands; tube very narrow and parallel-sided for ± 4 mm, then curving sharply downwards and broadening for 2.5–3 mm before opening out into two lips; posterior lip shorter than anterior, 1.5–2 mm long, with eglandular hairs; anterior lip 3–4 mm long, 1.5–2 mm deep, with eglandular hairs
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens connate for ± 1.5 mm, barely exserted or exserted for ± 1 mm
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Nutlets ± 1.5 mm long.
Swampland, grassland, forest edge and bamboo zone; 1100–2600 m
Least concern: widely distributed in several countries
Pycnostachys eminii can be distinguished by its calyx lobes, which have long, tangled hairs in the lower half. Due to this character, the fruiting inflorescence appears tomentose, with the glabrous, spinescent lobe tips emerging. It is closely related to P. erici-rosenii – see the notes under that species.
Flora districts: U2 U4 K5 T1 Range: Cameroon, Congo-Kinshasa (Kivu) and Ethiopia

Native to:

Burundi, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaïre

Coleus eminii (Gürke) A.J.Paton appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Mar 1, 1996 Cheek, M. [7277], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000086189
Jan 1, 1992 Leeuwenberg, A.J.M. [8842], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000025079
Nov 1, 1974 Letouzey, R. [13145], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000025080
Apr 1, 1969 Sanford, W.W. [5451], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000025078
Jan 1, 1960 Maitland, T.D. [1563], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000025089
Jan 1, 1960 Maitland, T.D. [1563], Cameroon Pycnostachys eminii K000025088
Jan 1, 1914 Scott Elliot, G.F. [7621], Uganda Pycnostachys eminii K000405739 Unknown type material
Milne-Redhead, E. [10504], Tanzania Pycnostachys eminii 27212.000
Ash [1805], Ethiopia Pycnostachys eminii 35603.000
Ash [1488], Ethiopia Pycnostachys eminii 35639.000
Stuhlmann [943], Tanzania Pycnostachys eminii K000405740 Unknown type material
Bequaert [4701], Congo, DRC Pycnostachys eminii K000405952 Unknown type material

First published in PhytoKeys 129: 43 (2019)

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

  • Masharabu, T., Bigendako, M.J., Lejoly, J., Nkengurutse, J., Noret, N., Bizuru, E. & Bogaert, J. (2010). Etude analytique de la flore et de la végétation du Parc National de la Ruvubu, Burundi International Journal of Biological and Chemical Sciences 4: 834-856.

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa

Flora of West Tropical Africa
Flora of West Tropical Africa

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew

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.