Common names:

Henningbos (A)

Origin of name:

tricostatum = having three primary veins or ridges

Diagnostic characters:

Medium sized flowers
Straw-coloured bracts
Dense inflorescences


Shrub or subshrub up to 1.5 m tall, branches long, slender, young parts thinly white-woolly, leafy. Leaves mostly 15-30 x 5-8 mm, reduced and more distant upwards, oblanceolate to narrowly elliptic, linear-lanceolate upwards, apex acute, mucronate, base narrowed, minutely petiolate, margins subrevolute, both surfaces thinly greyish-white woolly. Heads homogamous, campanulate, c. 4 x 3 mm, woolly at base, many in terminal compact corymbose panicles. Involucral bracts in 5 series, imbricate, graded, inner about equaling flowers, oblong, translucent, tips rounded, subopaque, convex, glossy, straw-coloured, not radiating. Receptacle with fimbrils equaling or exceeding ovaries. Flowers 18-26. Achenes 1 mm long, cylindric, obscurely angled, glabrous. Pappus bristles many, about equaling corolla, scabrid, barbellate above, bases cohering lightly by patent cilia.

Flowers between September and December.


Endemic to the Sandveld of Namaqualand and the Western Cape from Hondeklipbaai south to Buck Bay, N. of Cape Town.

Fynbos and Succulent Karoo Biomes.



Closely resembles H. hebelepis in foliage but easily recognized by its different involucre, fimbrilliferous receptacle and glabrous ovaries.

Recorded as much eaten by stock.



Helichrysum tricostatum (Thunb.) Less., Syn. Comp. 310 (1832); DC., Prodr. 6: 209 (1838); Harv. in F.C. 3: 251 (1865); Moeser in Bot. Jb. 44: 290 (1910).



Cape, Piketberg, Thunberg (sheet 19277, UPS, holo.).



Gnaphalium tricostatum Thunb., Prodr. 151 (1800), Fl. Cap. 657 (1823), non DC. (1838).



Acocks 14816 (PRE); Compton 18906 (NBG); Taylor 5506 (K; PRE); Nordenstam 3413 (NU; S); Pillans 5129 (BOL; K).