Scientific Name
Othonna retrorsa DC.
Higher Classification
Othonna retrorsa DC. var. linearifolia DC., Othonna retrorsa DC. var. spektakelensis (Compton) G.D.Rowley, Othonna spektakelensis Compton, Othonna zeyheri Sond. ex Harv.
National Status
Status and Criteria
Least Concern
Assessment Date
L. von Staden, P.F. Matlamela & D.A. Kamundi
A range-restricted (EOO 3 035 km²) species that is not threatened. Many recent collections indicate that it is more common than previously thought.
South African endemic
Provincial distribution
Northern Cape
Namaqualand, between Springbok, Hondeklipbaai and Kamieskroon.
Habitat and Ecology
Major system
Major habitats
Succulent Karoo
Rocky slopes, often in shallow depressions and cracks in granite boulders.
Grazing is a potential threat in some areas.

This species occurs as scattered subpopulations in a specialized habitat and is currently known from about 20 subpopulations. Subpopulations are often small, consisting of fewer than 50 plants, but it is also described as locally common on some specimen labels.

Population trend
Many recent collections of this taxon convinced Manning and Goldblatt (2010) that there is no basis for upholding the two known variants, one of which, O. retrorsa var. spektakelensis, was formerly classified as Rare. The poorly known Othonna zeyheri is now also included in this taxon.
Assessment History
Taxon assessed
Status and Criteria
Citation/Red List version
Othonna zeyheri Sond.Data Deficient (Taxonomically Problematic) Raimondo et al. (2009)
Othonna retrorsa DC. var. spektakelensis (Compton) G.D.RowleyRare Raimondo et al. (2009)
Othonna retrorsa DC. var. retrorsa Least Concern Raimondo et al. (2009)
Othonna retrorsa DC. var. spektakelensis (Compton) G.D.RowleyLower Risk - Least Concern Victor (2002)
Othonna retrorsa DC. var. spektakelensis (Compton) G.D.RowleyInsufficiently Known Hilton-Taylor (1996)

Compton, R.H. 1953. Plantae novae africanae: Othonna spektakelensis. Journal of South African Botany 19(5):118.

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

Manning, J.C. and Goldblatt, P. 2010. New synonyms and a new name in Asteraceae: Senecioneae from the southern African winter rainfall region. Bothalia 40(1):37-46.

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.

Victor, J.E. 2002. South Africa. In: J.S. Golding (ed), Southern African plant Red Data Lists. Southern African Botanical Diversity Network Report 14 (pp. 93-120), SABONET, Pretoria.

von Staden, L., Matlamela, P.F. & Kamundi, D.A. 2011. Othonna retrorsa DC. National Assessment: Red List of South African Plants version 2020.1. Accessed on 2023/12/08

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Distribution map

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