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  1. Family: Apocynaceae Juss.
    1. Rauvolfia Plum. ex L.

      1. This genus is accepted, and its native range is Tropics & Subtropics.


    Apocynaceae, A. J. M. Leeuwenberg & F. K. Kupicha et al. Flora Zambesiaca 7:2. 1985

    Trees, shrubs or rhizomatous undershrubs with white latex.
    Spines, tendrils and stipules absent.
    Branches terminating in 0–5 branchlets accompanied by 5–0 inflorescences; branch-nodes marked by a distinctive ring of numerous colleters confined to the leaf axils and the interpetiolar region.
    Leaves verticillate, 3–6 together, in some species on some nodes opposite, those of a whorl often unequal in size and shape.
    Inflorescences terminal, sometimes seemingly lateral, few- to many-flowered, cymes; the first ramification umbellate or corymbose.
    Flowers ac-tinomorphic or in some species slightly zygomorphic.
    Calyx lobes connate at the base only, without colleters inside.
    Corolla hypocrateriform, infundibuliform, urceolate or campanulate, glabrous outside; tube cylindrical, slightly constricted below the insertion of the stamens; lobes in bud contorted and overlapping to the left.
    Stamens inserted above the middle of the corolla tube; filaments short; anthers free from each other and the pistil, included, glabrous, basifixed, cordate at the base, mucronate at the apex.
    Ovary superior, composed of two, free or partly to completely fused carpels and with 1-2 ovules; disk annular or cyathiform, entire or lobed; style cylindrical; clavuncula conspicuous, bi-apiculate.
    Fruits apocarpous or partly to completely syncarpous drupes; often only 1 carpel developing; each carpel with a single stone containing a single seed.
    Seeds laterally compressed, obliquely ovate or elliptic; embryo large, surrounded by a thin carnous endosperm.

    Apocynaceae, E.A. Omino. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2002

    Shrubs or trees, rarely rhizomatous undershrubs (but not in our area), with white latex in all parts, often candelabrum-shaped; branches in whorls of 3–5; branchlets glabrous to lanate
    Leaves in whorls of 3–6, sometimes opposite on lower nodes, often confined to apices of branchlets, with numerous colleters in leaf axils; blade glabrous
    Inflorescence terminal, rarely axillary, umbellate, lax or congested, few–many-flowered
    Flowers 5-merous, fragrant
    Sepals connate at the base, slightly unequal
    Corolla variously shaped; lobes in bud overlapping to the left
    Stamens included or exserted; filaments short; anthers mucronate or apiculate at the apex, cordate at the base, glabrous
    Ovary superior of two free to syncarpous carpels, glabrous; disk annular or cupular, entire, undulate or slightly crenate, glabrous; pistil head cylindrical, with a basal collar and bifid stigmoid apex
    Fruit of two apocarpous or partly to completely syncarpous drupes each with a single stone
    Seeds laterally compressed, obliquely ovoid or ellipsoid, with a large embryo; embryo surrounded by a thin endosperm.



    Native to:

    Andaman Is., Angola, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Aruba, Assam, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belize, Benin, Bismarck Archipelago, Bolivia, Borneo, Brazil North, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, Burkina, Burundi, Cabinda, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Provinces, Caroline Is., Cayman Is., Central African Repu, Chad, China South-Central, China Southeast, Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, East Himalaya, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, French Guiana, Gabon, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gulf of Guinea Is., Guyana, Hainan, Haiti, Hawaii, Honduras, India, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Jawa, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Laccadive Is., Laos, Leeward Is., Lesser Sunda Is., Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaya, Mali, Maluku, Marquesas, Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, New Caledonia, New Guinea, Nicaragua, Nicobar Is., Nigeria, Northern Provinces, Panamá, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sulawesi, Sumatera, Suriname, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Trinidad-Tobago, Uganda, Venezuela, Venezuelan Antilles, Vietnam, Windward Is., Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

    Introduced into:


    Accepted Species


    Other Data

    Rauvolfia Plum. ex L. appears in other Kew resources:

    Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
    Giulietti, A.M. [PCD5498], Brazil K001062104
    Schatz, G.E. [876], Brazil K000903528
    Wight, R. [Cat. no. s.n.], India K001132397
    Heyne, B. [Cat. no. s.n.], India K001132396
    Ekema, N. [921], Cameroon K000436285
    s.coll. [Cat. no. s.n.] K001132400
    s.coll. [Cat. no. s.n.] K001132399
    s.coll. [Cat. no. s.n.], Myanmar K001132398
    s.coll. [Cat. no. s.n.], Nepal K001132395


    First published in Sp. Pl.: 208 (1753)

    Accepted by

    • Govaerts, R. (2003). World Checklist of Selected Plant Families Database in ACCESS: 1-216203. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.


    Flora of West Tropical Africa

    • —F.T.A. 4, 1: 108, as Rauwolfia

    Flora Zambesiaca

    • Sp. Pl. 1: 208 (1753).

    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • van Dilst & Leeuwenberg in B.J.B.B. 61: 21–69 (1991)
    • Sp. Pl. 1: 208 (1753)


    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
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    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Science Photographs
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew