Pelargonium pilosellifolium (Eckl. & Zeyh.) Steud.
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PELARGONIUM NOTES


Nomenclator Botanicus, 2nd Ed., 2 (1841) 288.
Section Hoarea

Habit

Acaulescent geophyte.



Leaves
Green or glaucous, lamina usually simple, lanceolate, adaxially concave, base narrowly cuneate, apex acute, 30-100 x 13-23 mm, sometimes pinnatisect to pinnate, pinnae 8-25 mm long, 1-1.5 mm wide, usually glabrous, margins ciliate with long stiff appressed haris. Petiole 10-60 mm, stipules subulate, adnate to petioles for 1/3 - 1/2 of their length.



Inflorescence
Scape 90-250 mm long, branched, bearing 2-3(-5) pseudo-umbellets, each 5-7(-10)-flowered. Pedicel cca. 0.5 mm.


Sepals
5, posterior usually triangular, others lanceolate, 5.5-7.5 x 1-4 mm. Hypanthium 8-13 mm, reddish brown to wine-red.

Petals
5, white, pale pink or pink with conspicuous and extensive wine-red markings in the centre, leaving only a narrow pink margin, patent during anthesis. Posterior two ligulate or narrowly spathulate, bases white, cuneate, apices rounded, truncate or emarginate, 8.5-12 x 2-3 mm. Anterior three narrowly spathulate, bases attenuate, apices rounded, 9-13 x 1.2-2 mm.

Stamens
5 fertile, concealed within the floral sheath, posterior one 3-4 mm, lateral two 3.5-5, anterior two 3.5-5 mm.

Distribution


Habitat

Like several other species, such as P. proliferum, P. longiflorum and P. longifolium, P. pilosellifolium can also have entire to pinnate and pinnatisect leaves.


Flowering plant from Oorlogskloof - surprising as it to find this species north of Ceres, this is unmistakenly P. pilosellifolium. Where the dark petal colour is not quite as distinct, this species can be confused with P. caledonicum, or even P. proliferum, however, the leaf, peduncle and hypanthium indumentum of P. pilosellifolium is quite distinct. 



It is not well known that P. pilosellifolium is one of the most widely distributed species in the section Hoarea, and extends from Calvinia in the north, across the Cedarberge, to Overberg in the south. The southern populations with entire laminas, as described in the Thesis of E. M. Marais (1994) are reasonably well known. The northern populations have pinnate to bipinnatisect leaves and it was previously thought that these were two different species, but this has recently been clarified (Victor, 2017). Above is the fynbos habitat at Oorlogskloof, next to P. reflexum and an as yet undescribed species, MST424.
 

Literature
E. M. Marais, Taxonomic Studies in Pelargonium, Section Hoarea (Geraniaceae), PhD Thesis, University of Stellenbosch, 1994.
D. Victor, P. pilosellifolium, Ger. Grp. News, Spring 2017, pp. 10-11
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