Gunnera perpensa

Gunnera perpensa


Common Names

Rivierpampoen (afrikaans)
River Pumpkin (english)
ramgola-vhadzimu (venda)
ugobho (zulu)
iphuzi (xhosa)


Genus Gunnera
Species perpensa
SA Plant Number
Basionym Gunnera perpensa


Gunnera perpensa is a very hardy, deciduous marsh plant, with large tuberous roots that have a nitrogen fixing, symbiotic relationship with blue-green algae. It has beautiful big, round, bluish-green leaves that are carried on long stems and arise from a central point on the roots.

The tiny brown flowers are densely packed in gracefully-drooping spikes from September to February. Used extensively for Muthi (traditional medicine). It only grows in wetlands in shallow water, at the edge of pools and streams and marshy areas.

An attractive foliage plant for damp places and around water features.

Plant in sun or semi-shade in damp to moist soil.

Size: up to 1m




Limpopo, North West, Gauteng, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu Natal, Free State, Eastern Cape, Western Cape

Natural Habitat:

Along rivers and streams, Vlei or vlei margin, damp, marshy areas.



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