Nomenclatural notes on southern African Oxalis species


  • Leanne L. Dreyer Department of Botany and Zoology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
  • Kenneth C. Oberlander Oberlander Department of Conservation Ecology and Entomology, Stellenbosch University, South Africa
  • Ronell R. Klopper South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria, South Africa



Oxalis, Nomenclature, Oxalis sonderiana, Oxalis bullulata, Oxalis beneprotecta


Background: The correct author citation of Oxalis sonderiana (Kuntze) J.F.Macbr. and the validity and identity of the species Oxalis beneprotecta R.Knuth, Oxalis bullulata T.M.Salter and Oxalis pulchella Jacq. var. beneprotecta (R.Knuth) T.M.Salter are unclear.
Objectives: To resolve the nomenclatural and taxonomic confusion surrounding these four taxa.
Method: We studied relevant herbarium records (especially type material) of all the taxa, and paired this with scrutiny of all publications that bear reference to the nomenclature and taxonomy of these species.
Results: The correct author citation for Oxalis sonderiana has been determined; Oxalis bullulata is confirmed as a distinct species, and the continued recognition of Oxalis beneprotecta as a variety of Oxalis pulchella is suggested. It is further ascertained that the name ‘Oxalis nidulans Turcz.’ is not a later homonym, but a reference to a misapplication of Oxalis nidulans Eckl. & Zeyh. to the type specimen of Oxalis sonderiana.
Conclusion: These results clarify the current confusion surrounding these taxa in global herbaria and in national and international databases.


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How to Cite

Dreyer, L. L. ., Oberlander, K. C. O., & Klopper, R. R. . (2018). Nomenclatural notes on southern African Oxalis species. Bothalia, African Biodiversity & Conservation, 48(1).