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Bencomia sphaerocarpa #4 | by J.G. in S.F.
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Bencomia sphaerocarpa #4

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Rosaceae - Endemic to El Hierro Island, Canary Islands (Spain); critically endangered




Shown: Detail of inflorescence; individual flowers composed of many stamens and lack petals; base of inflorescence out of frame at lower left; arching inflorescence becoming pendulous for most of its length


"Bencomia is a genus of four rare plant species native to the Canary Islands, which grow as woody, branching shrubs with glossy, evergreen leaves and central, pendulous inflorescences with small flowers followed by densely packed, globular fruits. Mature heights range from 1 to 4 meters." (Wikipedia)


Named for Bencomi, the last King of Tenerife


"Bencomia sphaerocarpa is endemic to the island of El Hierro, Canary Islands, Spain (Martín Osorio et al. 2004), where it can be found on the northern side of the island, from 400 to 1,200 m asl, in three locations: Tinco, Hoya de Fileba and Tábano. Only one of them shows an acceptable degree of conservation. The presence of the species in the island of La Palma has been reported in the past, but it has not been recently confirmed.

The area of occupancy of the species has been calculated to be between 0.75 and 3 km2. Decreasing trends have been reported for the distribution of the species (Gobierno de Canarias 2004)." (


ICUN Red List of Threatened Species complete article:


My set of images of Bencomia sphaerocarpa:


Photographed in U.C. Botanical Garden at Berkeley - Berkeley, California

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Taken on March 21, 2012