Full name and orig. publication: Schizoboea (Fritsch) B.L.Burtt, Notes Roy. Bot. Gard. Edinburgh 33: 266 (10 Sept. 1974).

Etymology: Composed of the Greek σχίζω, schizō = split, divide, and the generic name Boea. The first part of the name refers to the capsules splitting into several valves.

Synonym: Roettlera Vahl sect. Schizoboea Fritsch (1887).

Infrafamilial position: Didymocarpoid Gesneriaceae - "African and Madagascan genera” (Weber 2004).

Description: Weak creeping herbs, rooting at the lower nodes. Stem often dichasially branched, lateral branches produced just below the terminal inflorescence, branches comprising a single leaf pair and the terminal inflorescence. Leaves opposite, (sub)isophyllous, petiolate, lamina ovate. Inflorescences consisting of two lateral, opposite, condensed few-flowered cymes emerging from the axils of small bracts. Sepals free to base. Corolla white, tube short and broad, slightly ventricose, limb subregular, with short, rounded lobes. Fertile stamens two, the anterior ones, filaments “minced“, adnate to corolla in the middle part, anthers slightly divergent; staminodes 2 (in lateral position), very small. Nectary small, annular, shallowly 5-lobed. Ovary cylindric-conical, style short, stigma capitate. Fruit a cylindrical, sometimes slightly falcate capsule, dehiscing into 4 valves and the lateral, sclerified vascular bundles. Seeds verruculose (Beaufort-Murphy 1982).

Chromosome number: Unknown.

Type and only species: Schizoboea kamerunensis (Engl.) B.L.Burtt

Species names (incl. publication and synonyms): See Skog, L.E. & J.K. Boggan. 2005: World checklist of Gesneriaceae:

Distribution: Tropical W, C & E Africa (Cameroun, Fernanado Po; Ruanda, Zaire; S Tanzania).

Ecology: Little known.

Notes: Variation in leaf size and compactness caused the description of three species, originally referred to the genus Didymocarpus. When establishing the genus Schizoboea, Burtt (1974) united the three species into a single one. Molecular data suggest that the genus evolved from within the Streptocarpus subg. Streptocarpella and represents a caulescent Streptocarpus with straight, 4-valved fruits (Möller & Cronk 2001).

Selected references: Weber, Pl. Syst. Evol. 134: 183-192 (1980), morph.; Burtt, Fl. Cameroun 27: 15-16 (1984), reg. rev.; Weigend & Edwards, Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 118: 59-80 (1996). Möller & Cronk, Evolution 55: 918-929 (2001), morph. evol.

Bibliography: See Skog, L.E.

Bibliography: See Skog, L.E. & J.K. Boggan. 2005. Bibliography of the Gesneriaceae. 2nd edition:


Schizoboea kamerunensis (Engl.) B.L.Burtt (only species)

Engl., Bot. Jahrb. Syst. 18, t. 4/5 (1894).

Schizoboea kamerunensis (Engl.) B.L.Burtt

Cult. BG Bonn, phot. E. Fischer

Schizoboea kamerunensis (Engl.) B.L.Burtt

Shoot and fruit architecture; Weber, Pl. Syst. Evol. 134, figs. 1-5 (1980).


last modified: 2007-07-13