Beach Pumpkin

Name

Sea Pumpkin or Beach Pumpkin

Latin Name

Arctotheca populifolia

Description

The stem of the Beach Pumpkin is thick and the leaves are either simple and oval-shaped or lobed, and coated with white hairs that give the leaves a grey colour. The flowers are daisy-like with a rim of pale yellow florets. Size: Leaves 30 mm wide, flowers 25 mm.

Habitat

The Beach Pumpkin is a common occupant of coastal foredunes where it forms small hummocks. The hairs on its leaves are a means of reducing desiccation.

Field Notes

Incorrectly known by some as the Sea Pumpkin – the correct naming is Beach Pumpkin. The Sea Pumpkin is a different species altogether. Very common along the Southern African Coastline the species is found on deep sand dunes where they act as a stabiliser.

The flowers are pollinated by a variety of insects such as bees and flies and the ‘parachute’ seeds are dispersed mostly by wind but they can survive in saltwater and thus can be dispersed by the ocean currents.

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