Bihrmann's

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Family: RUSCACEAE 

 Semele androgyna
 
  
Author:  Carl Sigismund Knuth 1850
Family:  Ruscaceae 
Habitat:  The Canary and Madeira Islands
Soil:  Peat
Water:  Maximum
Sun:  Medium
Thickness:  4 centimetres
Height:  10 meters
Flower:  Crème Colour
Reproduction:  Seeds/Rhizomes
Pop names:  Climbing Butcher’s Broom
Synonyms:  Ruscus androgynus Linnaeus

 

  

This evergreen member of the Ruscaceae family was given this name by Carl Sigismund Knuth in 1850. It is found on the  Canary and Madeira Islands, growing in a rich peat with lots of water and some sun. The rhizomes grow up to four centimetres in diameter, the climbing vines can reach ten meters in length. The flowers are crème coloured or pale yellow, the fruits are red, one centimetre in diameter.

The bizarre leaves with the flowers at the edges are actually not leaves at all, but flattened branches known as phylloclades or cladodes.

Might be confused with Semele menezesi Costa 1927 (Pinheiro de Carvalho) from Madeira.

Semele is the name of the mother of Bacchus, androgyna : from andros , that means masculine and gyne , that means feminine, referring to the hermaphrodite flowers.