Azolla pinnata R. Br.
subsp. africana (Desv.) R.M.K. Saunders & K. Fowler

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Azolla pinnata subsp. africana

Photo: Petra Ballings

Azolla pinnata subsp. africana

Photo: Petra Ballings

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Synonyms: Azolla africana Desv.
Azolla guineensis Schumach.
Azollla pinnata R.Br. var. africana (Desv.) Baker
Common names:
Status: Native
Small floating ferns, whole plant oblong to deltoid in outline, up to 20 × 15 mm. Rhizome up to 0.2 mm in diameter, horizontal, branched into 3-5 alternate pinnae. Roots single or in fascicles of 2-3 at the branche nodes, up to 3.5 cm long, hairy, with conspicuous root cap. Leaves minute in 2 rows, dark green, 2-lobed; upper lobe up to 1.1 mm long, ovate to broadly elliptic in outline, apex pointed, papillate in the centre and with a hyaline border; lower lobe colourless, more or less equal in size. Plant heterosporous, sporocarps on the submerged lower lobes of the leaves.
Derivation of specific name: pinnata: with pinnate leaves, refers to the distinctly pinnate arrangements of the branches of the stem.
Habitat: Forms dense mats on shallow water or lakes, ponds and backwaters of rivers.
Worldwide distribution: South Africa, southern Mozambique, northern parts of Namibia & Botswana & Zimbabwe; widespread throughout tropical africa; also Madagascar, New Guinea, Australia.
Growth form(s): Aquatic.
Endemic status:
Red data list status:
Insects associated with this species:
Spot characters: Display spot characters for this species

Burrows, J.E. (1990). Southern African Ferns and Fern Allies. Frandsen, Sandton. Pages 81 - 82. (Includes a picture).

Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (1993). An annotated check-list of the pteridophytes of Malawi Kirkia 14(1) Page 83. As Azolla pinnata R.Br.

Crouch, N.R., Klopper, R.R., Burrows, J.E. & Burrows, S.M. (2011). Ferns of Southern Africa, A comprehensive guide Struik Nature Pages 212 - 214. (Includes a picture).

Da Silva, M.C., Izidine, S. & Amude, A.B. (2004). A preliminary checklist of the vascular plants of Mozambique. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 30 Sabonet, Pretoria Page 9.

Germishuizen, G. & Meyer, N.L. (eds) (2003). Plants of southern Africa: an annotated checklist. Strelitzia 14 Page 68.

Jacobsen, W.B.G. (1983). The Ferns and Fern Allies of Southern Africa. Butterworths, Durban and Pretoria. Pages 493 - 494. (Includes a picture).

Kornas, J. (1979). Distribution and ecology of the Pteridophytes in Zambia Polska Akademia Nauk Wydzial II Nauk Biologicznych Page 123.

Mapaura, A. & Timberlake, J. (eds) (2004). A checklist of Zimbabwean vascular plants Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report No. 33 Sabonet, Pretoria and Harare Page 5.

Roux, J.P. (2001). Conspectus of Southern African Pteridophyta. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 13 Page 179.

Roux, J.P. (2009). Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands Page 59.

Schelpe, E.A.C.L.E. (1970). Pteridophyta Flora Zambesiaca Pages 69 - 70.

Setshogo, M.P. (2005). Preliminary checklist of the plants of Botswana. Sabonet Report no. 37. Sabonet, Pretoria and Gaborone Page 15.

Timberlake, J.R. & Childes, S.L. (2004). Biodiversity of the Four Corners Area: Technical Reviews Volume Two (Chapter 5-15) Appendix 5-1: Plant Checklist Occasional Publications in Biodiversity 15 Page 179. as Azolla pinnata

Other sources of information about Azolla pinnata subsp. africana:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Azolla pinnata subsp. africana
Flora of Malawi: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana
Flora of Mozambique: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana
Flora of Zambia: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana
Flora of Zimbabwe: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Azolla pinnata
African Plant Database: Azolla pinnata
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Azolla pinnata
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Azolla pinnata
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Azolla pinnata
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Azolla pinnata
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Azolla pinnata
JSTOR Plant Science: Azolla pinnata
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Azolla pinnata
Plants of the World Online: Azolla pinnata
Tropicos: Azolla pinnata
Wikipedia: Azolla pinnata

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2014-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Caprivi: Species information: Azolla pinnata subsp. africana., retrieved 18 July 2024

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