Threatened Plant Species – Hermannia sandersonii

MALVACEAE: Hermannia sandersonii (Vulnerable)

This wonderful low-growing shrublet, commonly known as umakotegoyile in Zulu, is named after John Sanderson (1820 – 1881) who was a journalist, plant collector, and honorary secretary of the Natal Agricultural and Horticultural Society. This vibrant plant is found in grasslands, Indian Ocean Coastal Belt, on steep slopes in silty sand. Its distribution ranges at Camperdown, New Hanover, Pietermaritzburg, Durban, Umgeni and Glenside on the Noodsberg.

Hermannia sandersonii by Alison Young

Hermannia sandersonii by Alison Young

The shrublet is upright and multi-stemmed, with the stems partially divided into leaflets which are star-shaped with stiff hairs. The stems are about 204 mm with distant leaves about 40 mm long. The leaves are partially without a stalk, wrinkled, notched with teeth, star-shaped with long stiff hairs on the upper and velvety yellowish beneath. The flowers are in terminal clusters and very hairy. The roots are dense and woody.

Look out for this plant from September to March and please report these sightings to Suvarna Parbhoo, CREW programme: KZN Node Manager


  • Harv. Flora Capensis (Harvey). 1:200.186
  • Pooley, E. 1998. A field guide to wildflowers KwaZulu-Natal and the eastern region. Natal Flora Publications Trust, Durban.

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