Boswellia socotrana

The leaves are the smallest of the species and should be easy to distinguish. However, there are other species with similarly looking leaves, one is the Commiphora parvifolia. The easiest way to distinguish them is winged rhachis (the stem of which the leaflets are atatched), the habit – the overall shape or growth of the tree. Commiphora parvifolia has branches stretching wide horizontally, giving it an umbrella-like appearance.

There are at least 9 species of Boswellia on Socotra, and they are all endemic.

This is the complete list of all the 10 Boswellia species found in the Socotra Archipelago:

Boswellia ameero
Boswellia asplenifolia
Boswellia bullata
Boswellia dioscoridis
Boswellia elongata
Boswellia nana
Boswellia popoviana
Boswellia scopulorum
Boswellia socotrana

Found only on the island of Samha:
Boswellia samhaensis

In addition there are numerous hybrids and varieties that will keep botanists busy.

Read more:
The challenges in seed regeneration of the endemic Boswellia species on Socotra.

A summary of 13 research papers spanning twenty years of biodiversity research and nature conservation in the Socotra Archipelago.


Elevation: 333 meters.

Last updated on 16 February 2024