Exacum affine


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Exacum affine
Species Authority: Balf.f. ex Regel
Taxonomic Notes: This is a rather variable species and in this treatment includes E. gracilipes, an endemic described by Balfour. The type of E. gracilipes is a much more delicate plant than typical plants of E. affine. However, the difference in habit of these two specimens is comparable to that found within most populations of E. affine studied during recent visits to Socotra and it is difficult to find other characters to justify maintaining the two species. Exacum socotranum is also rather similar to E. affine but the characters defining it are consistent within populations. Plants from Dhofar, the southern region of Oman, recorded as E. affine and E. gracilipes, have recently been shown to represent two separate, species endemic to Oman. Exacum affine is now considered to be endemic to Socotra and Samha. Exacum affine is widely cultivated as a house plant in Europe under various names including the Arabian, Persian or Socotran Violet. All seed in the horticultural trade originated from collections made by Schweinfurth during his expedition to Socotra in 1881.

Miller and Morris (2004) list E. affine from Socotra and Samha.

The records from southern Oman and Wadi Rabkhut (Al Mahara) in Yemen are assumed not to be conspecific with E. affine (Patzelt in press.).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2012-05-02
Assessor/s: Knees, S.G., Patzelt, A. & Miller, A.
Reviewer/s: García, N. & Tognelli, M.
Contributor/s: Williams, L. & Neale, S.
This species is widespread and reasonably abundant throughout its range and subject to no known significant threats. It is therefore listed as Least Concern.
2012 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: This species is endemic to Socotra, Yemen (Miller and Morris 2004) where it is widely distributed.
Yemen (Socotra)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]


It is common in several vegetation types and under no present or perceived threat (Miller and Morris 2004).

Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species is widely distributed, typically in turf by water or in rock crevices and hollows that capture water, on both granite and limestone. It is present at elevations from sea-level to 1,050 m asl.
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

There are no known significant past, ongoing or future threats to this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

There are no conservation measures in place and no evidence of any required.

Citation: Knees, S.G., Patzelt, A. & Miller, A. 2013. Exacum affine. In: IUCN 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. <>. Downloaded on 20 April 2014.
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