Hibiscus panduriformis (PROTA)

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Plant Resources of Tropical Africa
Introduction
List of species


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Hibiscus panduriformis Burm.f.


Protologue: Fl. Ind. 151, t. 47 f. 2 (1768).
Family: Malvaceae
Chromosome number: 2n = 24

Origin and geographic distribution

Hibiscus panduriformis is widespread in mainland tropical Africa and Madagascar. It also occurs in Asia and Australia.

Uses

In DR Congo and Tanzania the bast fibre is used for cordage. In Kenya it is used for weaving bags. The flowers are eaten in DR Congo. Hibiscus panduriformis is sometimes grown as an ornamental.

Properties

The bast fibre of Hibiscus panduriformis is creamy white, soft and fairly lustrous, it is not very durable and is considered of poor quality. The fibre cells are 0.8–2.7 mm long and 14–29 μm in diameter, with an average cell wall thickness of 5.7 μm.

The seeds contain per 100 g dry matter: oil 15.4 g, protein 22.2 g, crude fibre 27.3 g. Fatty acids in the seed oil are: palmitic acid 12.3%, stearic acid 3.2%, oleic acid 10.2% and linoleic acid 74.3%. The oil is pale yellow.

Botany

Erect perennial herb or shrub up to 4 m tall, branched at the top; stem tomentose and with long simple or branched irritating hairs up to 5 mm long, becoming glabrous. Leaves alternate, simple; stipules often 2–3 side by side, filiform, 5–12 mm long; petiole 2–18 cm long, densely hairy; blade linear to ovate or orbicular in outline, 4–18 cm × 3–14 cm, unlobed to shallowly 3–7-lobed, base cordate to truncate, apex obtuse to acute, margin toothed, both sides hairy, conspicuously 5–7-veined. Flowers 1–4 in leaf axils, regular, bisexual, 5-merous, 3.5–10 cm in diameter; pedicel 3–30 mm long, articulated near the middle, densely hairy; epicalyx bracts 8–12, linear-spathulate, 5–17 mm × 1–2 mm, pubescent; calyx 10–20 mm long, lobes linear to triangular, 11–13 mm × 2–6 mm, densely puberulous to tomentellous, conspicuously 3-veined or 3-ribbed; petals 15–50 mm long, pale yellow to yellow with maroon centre, densely hairy outside; stamens numerous, united for most of their length into a staminal column 8–20 mm long, free parts of filaments 0.5–3 mm long; ovary superior, style 10–15 mm longer than staminal column, with branches 30–50 mm long. Fruit an ovoid to subglobose capsule 10–18 mm × 8–15 mm, on a stalk c. 55 mm long, acuminate, densely hairy, coriaceous at maturity. Seeds wedge-shaped, c. 3 mm × 2 mm, brown, striped, hairy.

In West Africa flowering and fruiting usually take place in June–December; in Zimbabwe and Mozambique flowering is in March–May.

Hibiscus comprises c. 200 species, distributed mainly in the tropics and subtropics, and many of them are grown as ornamentals. Hibiscus debeerstii De Wild. & T.Durand and Hibiscus shirensis Sprague & Hutch. are perennial herbs or shrubs very similar in morphology, ecology and distribution. They differ from one another in the relative size of the epicalyx that in the former species is larger than the calyx and in the latter smaller. Both species are distributed in DR Congo, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Mozambique. Hibiscus shirensis is also native to Rwanda, Burundi and Zimbabwe. The bast fibres of both species are used for making ropes. In Mozambique the shrubs are browsed by livestock.

Anatomy

In a transverse section of Hibiscus panduriformis stems harvested at the first pod stage in India the bast fibres occurred in wedges. The number of fibre bundles per wedge was c. 22, with c. 19 cells per bundle. The fibre bundles were irregularly shaped.

Ecology

Hibiscus panduriformis occurs from sea-level up to 2000 m altitude in woodland and grassland, alluvial clay flats, riverbanks, roadsides, cultivated land and fallows.

Management

The 1000-seed weight is 5.3–5.7 g. The fibre yield per plant is low. The presence of the plant near cultivated cotton can be troublesome as both plants are attacked by bollworms (Earias spp.).

Genetic resources

In view of its wide distribution in tropical Africa and elsewhere, Hibiscus panduriformis is not threatened with genetic erosion.

Prospects

Hibiscus panduriformis will probably remain of local importance for fibre purposes. Further ethnobotanical study might be worthwhile given the wide distribution of the species in tropical Africa and the scarce information on its use.

Major references

  • Burkill, H.M., 1997. The useful plants of West Tropical Africa. 2nd Edition. Volume 4, Families M–R. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, United Kingdom. 969 pp.
  • Kittur, M.H., Mahajanshetti, C.S., Rao, K.V.S.A. & Lakshminarayana, G., 1982. Characteristics and composition of Abutilon pannosum and Hibiscus panduriformis seeds and oils. Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society 59(3): 123–124.
  • Maiti, R.K., 1979. A study of the microscopic structure of the fiber strands of common Indian bast fibers and its economic implications. Economic Botany 33(1): 78–87.
  • Maiti, R., 1997. World fiber crops. Science Publishers, Enfield, New Hampshire, United States. 208 pp.
  • Verdcourt, B. & Mwachala, G.M., 2009. Malvaceae. In: Beentje, H.J. & Ghazanfar, S.A. (Editors). Flora of Tropical East Africa. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, United Kingdom. 169 pp.

Other references

  • Akoègninou, A., van der Burg, W.J. & van der Maesen, L.J.G. (Editors), 2006. Flore analytique du Bénin. Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, Netherlands. 1034 pp.
  • Dhankhar, B.S. & Mishra, J.P., 2004. Objectives of okra breeding. In: Singh, P.S., Dasgupta, S.K. & Tripathi, S.K. (Editors). Hybrid vegetable development. Food Products Press, New York, USA. pp. 195–209.
  • Exell, A.W. & Meeuse, A.D.J., 1961. Malvaceae. In: Exell, A.W. & Wild, H. (Editors). Flora Zambesiaca. Volume 1, part 2. Crown Agents for Oversea Governments and Administrations, London, United Kingdom. pp. 420–511.
  • Fryxell, P.A. & Stelly, D.M., 1993. Documented chromosome numbers 1993: 2. Additional chromosome counts in the Malvaceae. Sida 15: 639–647.
  • Hauman, L. & Wouters, W., 1963. Malvaceae. In: Robyns, W., Staner, P., Demaret, F., Germain, R., Gilbert, G., Hauman, L., Homès, M., Jurion, F., Lebrun, J., Vanden Abeele, M. & Boutique, R. (Editors). Flore du Congo belge et du Ruanda-Urundi. Spermatophytes. Volume 10. Institut National pour l’Étude Agronomique du Congo belge, Brussels, Belgium. pp. 92–190.
  • Keay, R.W.J., 1958. Malvaceae. In: Keay, R.W.J. (Editor). Flora of West Tropical Africa. Volume 1, part 2. 2nd Edition. Crown Agents for Oversea Governments and Administrations, London, United Kingdom. pp. 335–350.
  • SEPASAL, 2010. Hibiscus panduraeformis. [Internet] Survey of Economic Plants for Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (SEPASAL) database. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, United Kingdom. http://www.kew.org/ ceb/sepasal/. October 2010.
  • Stefanesco, E. & Bintoni-Juliassi, O., 1982. 101 wild fodder and food plants of Angonia province of Tete Mozambique. Field Document No 39. Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Maputo, Mozambique. 208 pp.
  • Thulin, M., 1999. Malvaceae. In: Thulin, M. (Editor). Flora of Somalia. Volume 2. Angiospermae (Tiliaceae-Apiaceae). Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, United Kingdom. pp. 40–83.
  • Vollesen, K., 1995. Malvaceae. In: Edwards, S., Mesfin Tadesse & Hedberg, I. (Editors). Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea. Volume 2, part 2. Canellaceae to Euphorbiaceae. The National Herbarium, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Department of Systematic Botany, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden. pp. 190–256.

Author(s)

  • E.G. Achigan Dako, PROTA Network Office Africa, World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), P.O. Box 30677-00100, Nairobi, Kenya

Correct citation of this article

Achigan-Dako, E.G., 2011. Hibiscus panduriformis Burm.f. [Internet] Record from PROTA4U. Brink, M. & Achigan-Dako, E.G. (Editors). PROTA (Plant Resources of Tropical Africa / Ressources végétales de l’Afrique tropicale), Wageningen, Netherlands. <http://www.prota4u.org/search.asp>.

Accessed 7 March 2020.