Photo Ken Hill
The Cycad Pages
Encephalartos munchii

Encephalartos munchii R.A. Dyer & I. Verd., Kirkia 7: 147-158 (1969). H—PRE
"TYPE: Mozambique, Zembi Mtn, south of Vila Pery, Munch 452 (SRGH, holo, PRE); (= Dyer & Verdoorn 5859; 5860; 5861, PRE)."

Etymology: Honoring R.C. Munch of Zimbabwe, well known student and collector of cycads.




Historical notes: Described in 1969 by South African botanists R. Allen Dyer and Inez Verdoon, who separated the previously broadly defined E. manikensis into a number of segregates, primarily on differences in pollen cone morphology (see also E. concinnus, E. pterogonus and E. chimanimaniensis).

Distinguishing features: A member of the E. manikensis complex, a group of robust cycads from the region of the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border with stout erect trunks of medium height, leaves with short petioles and numerous reduced spine-like leaflets, median leaflets with 1-6 spines on each margin, green cones and red seed-coats. The bluish-green leaves and leaflets with 3-6 spines on each margin distinguish this from other members of the group.

Distribution and habitat: Mozambique

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


Plants arborescent; stem 1 m tall, 35 cm diam.

Leaves 100-130 cm long, dark green or blue green, semiglossy, moderately keeled; rachis green, straight, stiff, not spirally twisted; petiole straight, with 1-6 prickles; leaf-base collar not present; basal leaflets reducing to spines.

Leaflets lanceolate, weakly discolorous, not overlapping, not lobed, insertion angle obtuse (45-80°); margins flat; upper margin heavily toothed (more than 3 teeth); lower margin lightly toothed (1-3 teeth); median leaflets 12-15 cm long, 18-20 mm wide.

Pollen cones 1-6, narrowly ovoid, bluish-green, 40-65 cm long, 7-9 cm diam.

Seed cones 1-6, ovoid, blue-green, 40-50 cm long, 15-20 cm diam.

Seeds oblong, 25-30 mm long, 20-23 mm wide, sarcotesta red.

The Cycad Pages

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Written and maintained by Ken Hill 1998-2010
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