ISI 2005-36. Sansevieria downsii Chahinian

Long cultivated as Sansevieria sp Malawi, this collection by Philip Downs was formally described in 2000 in British C&SJ 18 (3): 132-136. It resembles a stout ally of S. suffruticosa. The leaves grow to about 30 cm long and have faint silver bands when young but are solid, dark-green in age. They are rigid and tipped with a sharp, horny spine. Rooted cuts of HBG 65342, the type collection made 16 Oct 1975 by Dr Philip Downs (# 1/75), at Njakwa Bridge, over south Rukuru River, Northern Region, Malawi. $6.

Correction, published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal Vol. 78 (2), March - April, 2006

Steve Jankalski correctly points out that the illustration compares S. downsii with the smaller S. ballyi (only recently published by Len Newton, Brit. Cact. Succ. J. 22:10-12, 2004), not S. suffruticosa as stated. He also questioned whether the larger plant in the photo is indeed S. downsii. We discovered that while growing under lush conditions our plants at first have silvery bands and only turn the solid, dark green considered characteristic of this species in age.

Photo © 2005 by John N. Trager. Images may not be used elsewhere without permission.

Published in the Cactus and Succulent Journal, Vol. 77 (2), March - April, 2005