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Orthanthera jasminiflora (Decne.) Schinz

Protologue
Verhandl. Bot. Ver. Brandenb. 30: 265 (1888).
Family
Asclepiadaceae (APG: Apocynaceae)
Synonyms
Barrowia jasminiflora Decne. (1844), Orthanthera browniana Schinz (1888).
Origin and geographic distribution
Orthanthera jasminiflora occurs in DR Congo, Zambia, Angola, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe.
Uses
In northern Botswana, the paired young fruits of Orthanthera jasminiflora are eaten fresh or cooked as a vegetable.
Botany
Climbing herb up to 5 m long with a woody, stout rhizome; stem procumbent, branching, scabrous to pubescent. Leaves opposite, simple; petiole 2–10 mm long; blade linear, ovate or elliptical, 1.5–7 cm × 0.5–2.5 cm, base rounded, truncate or cordate, apex acute, margin entire but often wavy or crisped, rather thick and rigid, scabrous-pubescent. Inflorescence an umbel, 2–13-flowered; peduncle up to 4 cm long. Flowers bisexual, regular, 5-merous; pedicel 0.5–1.5 cm long; calyx divided with lanceolate lobes, up to 6 mm × 2 mm; corolla tubular, cream-coloured, strongly scented, pubescent, tube up to 2 cm long, globose-pentagonal at base, cylindrical above, lobes linear-lanceolate, up to 12 mm × 2 mm, spreading; corona lobes 1 mm long; stamens with connivent, linear anthers 1–2 mm long, apiculate; ovary superior, style shorter than anthers. Fruit a pair of follicles, each one fusiform, up to 10 cm × 12 mm, tapering into a long beak.
In Africa the genus Orthanthera comprises 5 species, but it is badly known.
Ecology
Orthanthera jasminiflora grows in dry savanna.
Genetic resources and breeding
It is unknown whether Orthanthera jasminiflora is in danger of genetic erosion.
Prospects
The nutritional value of the fruits should be investigated before any prospect can be given.
Major references
• van Wyk, B.E., van Oudtshoorn, B. & Gericke, N., 1997. Medicinal plants of South Africa. Briza Publications, Pretoria, South Africa. 304 pp.
Other references
• Brown, N.E., 1902–1904. Asclepiadaceae. In: Thiselton-Dyer, W.T. (Editor). Flora of tropical Africa. Volume 4(1). Lovell Reeve & Co, London, United Kingdom. pp. 231–503.
Author(s)
P.C.M. Jansen
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands


Editors
G.J.H. Grubben
Prins Hendriklaan 24, 1401 AT Bussum, Netherlands
O.A. Denton
National Horticultural Research Institute, P.M.B. 5432, Idi-Ishin, Ibadan, Nigeria
Associate Editors
C.-M. Messiaen
Bat. B 3, Résidence La Guirlande, 75, rue de Fontcarrade, 34070 Montpellier, France
R.R. Schippers
De Boeier 7, 3742 GD Baarn, Netherlands
General editors
R.H.M.J. Lemmens
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands
L.P.A. Oyen
PROTA Network Office Europe, Wageningen University, P.O. Box 341, 6700 AH Wageningen, Netherlands

Correct citation of this article:
Jansen, P.C.M., 2004. Orthanthera jasminiflora (Decne.) Schinz In: Grubben, G.J.H. & Denton, O.A. (Editors). PROTA 2: Vegetables/Légumes. [CD-Rom]. PROTA, Wageningen, Netherlands.