Ephedra foliata 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Gnetopsida Ephedrales Ephedraceae

Scientific Name: Ephedra foliata
Species Authority: Boiss. ex C.A.Mey.
Common Name(s):
English Shrubby Horsetail
Ephedra alte C.A.Mey.
Ephedra ciliata Fisch. & C.A.Mey.
Ephedra foliata Boiss. ex C.A.Mey. subspecies aitchisonii Stapf
Ephedra rollandii Maire

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2010-09-17
Assessor(s): Bell, A. & Bachman, S.
Reviewer(s): Hilton-Taylor, C. & Lutz, M.L.
A widespread species and with no perceived threats at present. Occurs in numerous protected areas across the range and is known from recent collections indicating the species is still extant and the population is stable. Hence is listed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Distributed in northwest and eastern Africa and widespread across the Arabian Peninsula, extending east to India (Saharo-Sindian/Irano-Turanian distribution; Freitag and Maier-Stolte 2003). Occurs from sea level up to 1,700 m.
Countries occurrence:
Afghanistan; Algeria; Bahrain; Chad; Djibouti; Egypt (Egypt (African part), Sinai); Ethiopia; India (Punjab); Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Jordan; Kuwait; Mauritania; Morocco; Oman; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Qatar; Saudi Arabia; Somalia; Turkmenistan; United Arab Emirates; Western Sahara; Yemen (North Yemen, South Yemen)
Upper elevation limit (metres): 1700
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Is common to uncommon depending on the area. It has been recorded in low numbers in protected areas in Iran.
Current Population Trend: Stable
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A shrub, climbing/scrambling, occurring on rocky slopes and wadi-sides. Noted as a typical component of different types of thorn savanna in semi-arid and arid climates (Freitag and Maier-Stolte 2003). Flowers from February to May.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The stems of most members of this genus contain the alkaloid ephedrine and are valuable in the treatment of asthma and many other complaints of the respiratory system (Plants for a Future 2010). However, E. foliata is reported to have little or no ephedrine. The crushed boiled plant is used for tanning (Norton et al. 2009).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Used medicinally and fruit is eaten as a dessert or as famine food, although these are not considered to be major threats.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Occurs in numerous protected areas across its range. Collections are known from at least five botanical gardens and seed has been collected for ex situ storage as part of the Millennium Seed Bank project.

Citation: Bell, A. & Bachman, S. 2011. Ephedra foliata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T201696A9167394. . Downloaded on 26 May 2016.
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