|Photo Ken Hill
|The Cycad Pages
- Encephalartos humilis I. Verd., "Bothalia 6: 220, 241, pl. 3 " (1951).
- "TYPE: Republic of South Africa, Transvaal Province, Schogen Hill, with male cone, Dyer 4806 (?holo PRE - not stated)."
Latin humilis, humble or lowly, from the small stature.
Described in 1951 by South African botanist
A dwarf species with very little clear trunk and short, keeled, twisted and
recurved leaves with entire leaflets. Other dwarf species with short leaves
have straight, erect, more or less flat leaves. E. humilis is though
to be most closely related to the much larger and longer-leaved arborescent
species E. lanatus and E. laevifolius.
Distribution and habitat:
Eastern Transvaal Province, South Africa, in grassland on slopes on sandy
soils over sandstones.
1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants
Plants acaulescent; stem 0.3 m tall, 20 cm diam.
Leaves 30-50 cm long, dark green, semiglossy, slightly keeled
(opposing leaflets inserted at 120-160° on rachis); rachis yellowish,
straight with last third sharply recurved, 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 obtuse (45-80°); margins flat; upper margin entire (no
teeth); lower margin entire (no teeth); median leaflets 9-13 cm long, 4-6 mm
Pollen cones 1, narrowly ovoid, brown, 15-20 cm long, 4-5 cm diam.
Seed cones 1, ovoid, brown, 25-30 cm long, 8-10 cm diam.
Seeds ovoid, 25-30 mm long, 20-25 mm wide, sarcotesta yellow.