Selaginella - Selaginellaceae

Selaginella grallipes Alston






Common name


Rhizophores robust, straight, stilt-like, up to 60 cm long and 2 mm in diameter, streaked, dichotomous at the base, located in the lower third of the stem. Stem regularly bipinnate, up to 2 m high, ascending, articulated, monostelic, streaked, glabrous, marked dorsally when dry, grooved; lateral branches regularly pinnate, up to 22 cm long, oblong in outline, ultimate ramules up to 4 cm. Leaves heteromorphic, subentire; axillary leaves lanceolate, not auriculate, lateral narrow, oblong, slightly falcate, more or less decurrent at the base in the lower part, more decurrent and narrower on the ultimate ramules, wider and barely falcate, up to 4 mm, on the main stem; intermediate leaves alternate, imbricate, a little unequal, narrow, lanceolate, slightly acuminate at the top. Strobili tetragonal, up to 15 mm, solitary at the top of the ultimate branchlets; sporophylls triangular-ovate, slightly acuminate, a little keeled.




Edges of streams, edges of sunny roads.

Distribution worldwide

See African distribution.

Distribution in Africa

Congo, Equatorial Guinea (incl. Bioko), Gabon.

Growth form



  • Roux, J.P. (2009) Synopsis of the Lycopodiophyta and Pteridophyta of Africa, Madagascar and neighbouring islands. Strelitzia 23, South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. Page 23. As Selaginella gracillipes Alston.
  • Thardieu-Blot, M.L. (1964) Ptéridophytes vol.8.Flore du Gabon, Pages 16 - 17. (Includes a picture).