Clarens Village Nature Reserve:  Sebaea leiostyla

Sebaea leiostyla (Photo: Damien Coulson)

This is the first Plant of Interest picture  taken using the new Powershot SX520.

Sebaea leiostyla is an annual herb whose stems grow to 100mm tall. One will find this herbaceous species in moist grassland areas often in close proximity to cover shrubs and streams at altitudes of 2600 m A.S.L., occurring from the Eastern Cape right through to Mpum.

To spot this little herb one must be prepared to follow one’s curiosity and really get in close to the subject. A camera with a good macro function is useful and could help aid in the identification. The word leio is Latin for smooth, styla Latin for style, in reference to the bare style on which the flowers are born.

The oval leaves of S. leiostyla measure approx. 10-15mm by 6-8mm wide, are scattered and oppositely arranged and appear dark green and somewhat waxy or glossy. The inflorescence is dense and held aloft by simple or branched and mostly bare stems. The flowers are small (5-15mm diam) with a corolla tube that’s usually longer than the petals. The flowers comprise 5 light-mustard yellow petals, partially enclosed by yellow-green sepals. Flowering occurs from Oct-Jan. Uses:


Small they are, but they make a brilliant pot plant or alternatively planted against a wall they make great ornamentals.


Many spp. of the Genus Sedoides have medicinal properties. S. leiodstyla is used by the Sesotho as a snake-bite remedy

Conservation Status

The SANBI conservation status for S. leiostyla is listed as Least Concern.

Damien1-100x100Article and photography by Damien Coulson

Head ranger:  Clarens Village Nature Reserve

Click here For more information on the Plants found in the Clarens Village Nature Reserve.

Author: Damien Coulson