Scientific Name
Gladiolus geardii L.Bolus
Higher Classification
Gladiolus geardii L.Bolus var. uitenhagensis L.Bolus, Gladiolus robustus Goldblatt
National Status
Status and Criteria
Near Threatened B1ab(iii)+2ab(iii)
Assessment Date
L. von Staden
Gladiolus geardii is a range-restricted species with an extent of occurrence (EOO) of 1608 km². It is a fairly common habitat specialist, known from 10-15 locations. It has lost habitat to timber plantations in the past, and is currently threatened by competition from alien invasive plants, mostly on the Van Stadensberg. Subpopulations in the Baviaanskloof are not currently threatened.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Eastern Cape
This species is endemic to the Eastern Cape, where it occurs in the Baviaanskloof, Groot Winterhoek, Kouga and Van Stadens River Mountains.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Kouga Grassy Sandstone Fynbos, Kouga Sandstone Fynbos, Vanstadens Forest Thicket, Loerie Conglomerate Fynbos, Algoa Sandstone Fynbos, Albany Alluvial Vegetation, Sundays Valley Thicket, Sundays Mesic Thicket, Elands Forest Thicket
It is localized to montane seeps, stream banks, shady kloofs and ravines with peaty, sandstone soil.
This species has lost habitat to timber plantations in the past, but there has been no further habitat loss recorded over 24 years (1990-2014). Subpopulations near the edges of plantations are threatened by competition from escaped pine seedlings, which are known to rapidly invade sandstone fynbos in the Western Cape. Recent field observations by volunteer members of the Custodians of Rare and Endangered Wildflowers (CREW) indicate the presence of invasive pine and eucalyptus in this species' habitat.

This species is a highly localized habitat specialist, but it can be locally common (N.A. Helme pers. obs. 2001). A continuing decline is inferred from competition from alien invasive plants.

Population trend
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Gladiolus geardii L.BolusRare Raimondo et al. (2009)
Gladiolus robustus GoldblattRare Hilton-Taylor (1996)

Goldblatt, P. and Manning, J.C. 1998. Gladiolus in southern Africa. Fernwood Press, Vlaeberg.

Goldblatt, P. and Manning, J.C. 2000. Cape Plants: A conspectus of the Cape Flora of South Africa. Strelitzia 9. National Botanical Institute, Cape Town.

Hilton-Taylor, C. 1996. Red data list of southern African plants. Strelitzia 4. South African National Botanical Institute, Pretoria.

Raimondo, D., von Staden, L., Foden, W., Victor, J.E., Helme, N.A., Turner, R.C., Kamundi, D.A. and Manyama, P.A. 2009. Red List of South African Plants. Strelitzia 25. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

von Staden, L. 2018. Gladiolus geardii L.Bolus. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2022/07/06

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Distribution map

© G. Darling

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