|Photo Ken Hill
|The Cycad Pages
- Encephalartos cycadifolius (Jacq.) Lehm., Pugill. 6: 13 (1834). ?
Encephalartos cycadifolius var. glaber Regel, Trudy Imp. S.-Petersburgsk. Bot. Sada 3: 111 (1873).
- TYPE: E. cycadifolius cited.
|Photo Ken Hill
Cycadis, a Latinised form of Cycas, with the Latin
folius, leaf, in reference to the Cycas-like leaves.
Described as a species of Zamia in 1801 by French botanist
The narrow entire leaflets are distincive, but can be confused with E.
ghellinckii and E. friderici-guilielmi. E. ghellinckii
usually has even narrower leaflets that can be distinguished by the recurved
margins. E. cycadifolius can be separated from E. friderici
guilielmi by erect crown of stiff leaves with usually shorter and
narrower leaflets, and the absence of thick wool from the crown. Stems are
also shorter, and cones fewer in number.
Distribution and habitat:
Widespread in eastern Cape Province, in grassland on shallow soils over
shale mountain slopes.
1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants
Plants acaulescent; stem 1 m tall, 30 cm diam.
Leaves 100 cm long, blue green, dull, slightly keeled or flat (not
keeled) in section (opposing leaflets inserted at 150-180° on rachis);
rachis yellowish, straight, stiff, slightly twisted in some leaves; petiole
straight, with no prickles; leaf-base collar not present; basal leaflets not
reducing to spines.
Leaflets linear, strongly discolorous, not overlapping, not lobed,
insertion angle horizontal or obtuse (45-80°); margins flat; upper margin
entire (no teeth); lower margin entire (no teeth); median leaflets 9-12 cm long,
4-6 mm wide.
Pollen cones 1-2, ovoid, yellow, 15-20 cm long, 5-8 cm diam.
Seed cones 1-2, ovoid, yellow, 20-30 cm long, 16-18 cm diam.
Seeds oblong, 25-30 mm long, 15-20 mm wide, sarcotesta yellow.