Photo Ken Hill
The Cycad Pages
Encephalartos heenanii

Encephalartos heenanii R.A. Dyer, Bothalia 10(4): 539-546 (1972). H—PRE
"TYPE: Swaziland, Piggs Peak, on Krantzes, Sep 1969, D. Heenan s.n., PRE 30904I (holo PRE)."

Etymology: Honouring Denis Heenan of Swaziland, who recognised this as a distinct species.




Historical notes: Described in 1969 by South African botanist R. Allen Dyer.

Distinguishing features: Closest to E. paucidentatus, but a plant of smaller stature with shorter leaves that are generally lighter in colour, more persistently tomentose, and more rigidly upturned to form a cup-shaped crown. Cones of E. heenanii are smaller and greenish brown, and pollen and seed cones are also almost identical.

Distribution and habitat: Southern Transvaal Province, South Africa, and adjacent parts of Swaziland, in grassland on steep slopes.

Conservation: 1997 IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants category E.
Photo Ken Hill


Plants arborescent; stem 3 m tall, 25-35 cm diam.

Leaves 100-125 cm long, light or bright green, semiglossy, flat (not keeled) in section (opposing leaflets inserted at 180° on rachis); rachis green, incurved, curving stiffly upwards, slightly twisted in some leaves; petiole recurved, with no prickles; leaf-base collar not present; basal leaflets not reducing to spines.

Leaflets lanceolate, strongly discolorous, not overlapping, not lobed, insertion angle obtuse (45-80°); margins flat, or incurved; upper margin entire (no teeth); lower margin entire (no teeth); median leaflets 12-15 cm long, 15-20 mm wide.

Pollen cones 1-3, ovoid, yellow, 27-30 cm long, 15-17 cm diam.

Seed cones 1-3, ovoid, yellow, 23-30 cm long, 17-18 cm diam.

Seeds oblong, 23-25 mm long, 14-18 mm wide, sarcotesta red.

The Cycad Pages

© 1998-2012 Royal Botanic Gardens Sy dney
Written and maintained by Ken Hill 1998-2010
Maintained by Leonie Stanberg and Dennis Stevenson 2010-2012
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