Origin of name:

nimbi = clouds (rain), mist.
cola = dweller

Diagnostic characters:

Compact flower heads
Bright yellow bracts
Leaves lanceolate


Tufted perennial herb forming small mats, main stems decumbent, rooting, flowering stems erect, 100-150 mm long, simple, densely leafy near base, becoming distantly so then bracteate near tips. Leaves mostly 25-40 x 4-7 mm, half the length petiolar, blade elliptic-lanceolate, often conduplicate and falcate, tip acute, base narrowed to a broad flat clasping petiole, both surfaces grey woolly-felted. Heads homogamous, cylindric, 3-4 x 1.5-2 mm, many closely congested and felted together into a flat-topped glomerule 15-20 mm across at the stem tip. Involucral bracts in 3-4 series, graded, loosely imbricate, about equaling flowers, pellucid, pale golden brown, tips very obtuse, concave, not radiating. Receptacle shortly honeycombed. Flowers 4-6, yellow. Achenes 0.75 mm long, with myxogenic duplex hairs. Pappus bristles many, equaling corolla, upper part subplumose, yellow, bases cohering strongly by patent cilia.

Flowering in February.


Known from only four collections on the high Lesotho plateau: the summit of Mount aux Sources, at the top of Mashai Pass and the top of Sani Pass at c. 2 800 m, and from Tselanyane, Butha Buthe district, c. 2 750 m, in stony turf.

Grassland Biome.


Similar in aspect to H. subfalcatum, with which it may be found growing, but easily distinguished by its different indumentum, homogamous heads, and different pappus.




Helichrysum nimbicola Hilliard in Notes R. bot. Gdn Edinb. 40: 262 (1982).



Natal-Lesotho border, Sani Pass, 2850 m, on steep stony grass slopes, 18 ii 1973, Hilliard 5334 (NU, holo.; E; K; MO; PRE; S, iso.).






Hilliard & Burtt 10479 (NU); Jacot Guillarmod 4223 (RUH).