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Genus: Nicotiana (Tobacco genus)

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Asterids > Euasterid I > Order: Solanales > Family: Solanaceae

About 67 species, found mainly in the New World. Nicotiana africana is the only indigenous species in southern Africa, endemic to Namibia. In addition, three species are naturalised and six species are cultivated in southern Africa. The genus includes tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) which contains the toxic alkaloid nicotine which, besides being addictive to people, is also used as an insecticide.

Species native to southern Africa

List from Plants of southern Africa - an online checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Nicotiana africana

The only indigenous Nicotiana in southern Africa, endemic to Namibia.

 

Species naturalised in southern Africa

List from Plants of southern Africa - an online checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Nicotiana glauca (Wild Tobacco)

A declared Category 1 invader plant in South Africa. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Nicotiana longiflora

 

Nicotiana tabacum (Tobacco)

Cultivated in southern Africa, but also occurs as an escape in natural vegetation. Contains the toxic alkaloid nicotine which, besides being addictive to people, is also used as an insecticide. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Other species, cultivated in southern Africa

List from Glen (2002).

Nicotiana alata 

 

Nicotiana glauca (Wild tobacco)

Native to Argentina and Bolivia.

 

Nicotiana langsdorffii

Native from Brazil to Argentina.

 

Nicotiana longiflora

Native from Brazil to Argentina.

 

Nicotiana rustica (Aztec Tobacco)

Native from Mexico to Brazil. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

 

Nicotiana sylvestris

Native to Argentina and Bolivia.

 

Nicotiana x sanderae

A hybrid of Nicotiana alata x Nicotiana forgetiana, with many garden varieties.

Nicotiana x sanderae 'Starship White'

Herbivores in southern Africa

Coelonia mauritii (Fulvous Hawkmoth)

Lepidoptera: Sphingidae (hawkmoths)

Caterpillars recorded eating the leaves of Nicotiana tabacum (Tabacco).

 
 

Publications

  • Glen, H.F. 2002. Cultivated Plants of Southern Africa. Jacana, Johannesburg.

 

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