Origin of name:

sessiliodes = resembling H. sessile

Diagnostic characters:

Large solitary heads
White bracts


Much-branched cushion-forming dwarf shrub, very compact, smoothly rounded in outline, old main stems woody, gnarled, up to 10 mm diam., branches densely tufted, leafy. Leaves 4�15 x 1�5 mm, closely imbricate, rosulate when viewed from above, linear to lanceolate-elliptic, upper surface with smooth sericeous 'tissue-paper' indumentum, green with a silvery sheen, drying silvery grey, white-felted below. Heads homogamous, campanulate, 10�15 mm long, nearly double that when radiant, sessile, solitary at the tips of the branchlets. Involucral bracts in 8�12 series, graded, closely imbricate, much exceeding the flowers, outermost palest brown or sometimes rose-pink or crimson, inner white or tinged rose, opaque. Receptacle very shortly honeycombed. Flowers 37�118, yellow. Achenes 2 mm long, elliptic, with myxogenic duplex hairs. Pappus bristles many, equaling corolla, scabrid, bases cohering lightly by patent cilia.

Flowers from July to December.


Forms very dense, hard and compact cushions from 50 mm to c. 1 m across, tightly pressed against cliff faces or precipitous rock 'steps' down mountainsides, commonly on dolerite or basalt. On the high Lesotho mountains, the Drakensberg from the Cathedral Peak area in KwaZulu-Natal to the Barkly East area in the E. Cape, the Witteberg near Lady Grey, and the Drakensberg outliers, Mount Currie near Kokstad and Ingeli Mountain on the Natal-Transkei border, between c. 2 000 and 3 200 m.

Grassland Biome.


Much confused with H. sessile, which is readily distinguished by its narrowly oblong leaves enveloped in thick white silky wool.




Helichrysum sessilioides Hilliard in Notes R. bot. Gdn Edinb. 32: 360 (1973), Compositae in Natal 220 (1977).



Lesotho, Qacha's Nek distr., Mt Sauer, Jacottett & Jacottet (Z, holo.).



H. aretioides Thell. in Vierteljahrsschrift naturf. Ges. Z�rich 66: 241 (1921), non Turcz. (1851). Type as for H. sessilioides.

H. sessile sensu Killick, Mem. bot. Surv. S. Afr. 34: 140 (1963); Trauseld, Wild Flowers of Natal Drakensberg 200 and 201 (1969), non DC.



Beverly & Hoener 717 (E; NU); Hilliard 5193 (E; K; MO; NU; PRE; S); Wright 187 (E; K; NU; S).