Skip to main content
This genus is accepted, and its native range is Tropics & Subtropics.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium

[FZ]

Nyctaginaceae, B. L. Stannard. Flora Zambesiaca 9:1. 1988

Morphology General Habit
Annual or perennial herbs, often from thick woody or fleshy rootstock, usually many-stemmed, sometimes viscid, raphides often present in all parts.
Morphology Stem
Stems slender, erect, decumbent or ascending, sometimes woody towards base, terete, often much branched.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves opposite, commonly in pairs of unequal size at each node, sometimes fleshy, entire, sometimes repand, petiolate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescences terminal and axillary, paniculate, umbellate or cymose, sometimes diffuse, pedunculate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences Bracteoles
Bracteoles minute, caducous.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers small, solitary or glomerate, fugacious, hermaphrodite, subsessile to pedicellate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Perianth
Perianth: lower portion constricted above ovary, cylindrical to obconical, upper portion petaloid, coloured, campanulate, slightly 5-lobed, caducous after anthesis.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens 1–4(6), exerted or included; filaments filiform, shortly united a base; anthers dithecous, usually subglobular.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Pistil
Ovary ellipsoid, shortly stipitate, 1-ovulate; style filiform, exserted or included; stigma capitate.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit usually more or less filling anthocarp cavity. Anthocarps fusiform, clavate or turbinate, conspicuously 3–5 sulcate, glabrous or glandular pubescent, often viscid; ribs rounded, acute or winged, usually mucous when wet.

[FTEA]

Nyctaginaceae, Christopher Whitehouse. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1996

Morphology General Habit
Annual or perennial herbs, erect, diffuse or prostrate; stems slender, glabrous or pubescent, often with glandular rings about the internodes, sometimes woody at the base
Morphology Leaves
Leaves opposite, the blades often unequal, entire or sinuate, often fleshy, petiolate or sessile
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers small or minute, bisexual, variously arranged, on jointed pedicels, each subtended by 1 or 2 minute, often deciduous, bracteoles
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Perianth
Perianth campanulate or trumpet-shaped; the lower half constricted above the ovary, sepaloid and green; the upper half petaloid, brightly coloured, 5-lobed and caducous
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens 1–4(–6), exserted or included; filaments very slender, united at the base
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Pistil
Ovary stipitate, narrowed into a thin style; stigma capitate
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit obconical, obovoid, ovoid or terete, 3–5-ribbed, 3–5-angled, or sometimes with 3–5 low, thick wings, glabrous or glandular-pubescent; embryo hooked.

[FSOM]

M. Thulin et al. Flora of Somalia, Vol. 1-4 [updated 2008] https://plants.jstor.org/collection/FLOS

Morphology General Habit
Annual or perennial herbs, never scandent, stems and leaves often flushed reddish
Morphology Leaves
Leaves opposite, subequal, petiolate, often conspicuously pale on underside
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Flowers in small, often congested, cymes or irregular umbels, sometimes aggregated into terminal panicles; bracts very inconspicuous in most species
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Perianth
Perianth-limb sharply differentiated, campanulate, up to 2.5 mm long, white, pink or reddish purple, soon falling
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Androecium Stamens
Stamens 2–4, shortly exserted
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Anthocarp fusiform to clavate or obconical, with 3–5(–6) ribs, sometimes produced into corky ridges, glabrous or with glandular hairs, particularly between the ribs, but never with large multicellular glands.
Distribution
Some 60 species throughout the tropics.
Note
The genus includes several rather variable pantropical weeds with complex nomenclatural histories and many infraspecific taxa. Records of B. diandra L. in Somalia seem to be based on misidentified material.

Native to:

Afghanistan, Alabama, Aldabra, Algeria, Andaman Is., Angola, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Arizona, Arkansas, Aruba, Assam, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belize, Benin, Bolivia, Borneo, Botswana, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, Burkina, Burundi, California, Cambodia, Cameroon, Cape Provinces, Cape Verde, Caroline Is., Cayman Is., Central African Repu, Chad, Chagos Archipelago, Chile Central, Chile North, China South-Central, China Southeast, Christmas I., Cocos (Keeling) Is., Colombia, Comoros, Congo, Cook Is., Costa Rica, Cuba, Desventurados Is., Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Florida, French Guiana, Gabon, Galápagos, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Gilbert Is., Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gulf of Guinea Is., Gulf States, Guyana, Hainan, Haiti, Hawaii, Honduras, Howland-Baker Is., India, Iran, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Jawa, Kazan-retto, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Laccadive Is., Laos, Lebanon-Syria, Leeward Is., Lesser Sunda Is., Liberia, Libya, Line Is., Louisiana, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaya, Maldives, Mali, Maluku, Marcus I., Marianas, Marquesas, Marshall Is., Mauritania, Mexican Pacific Is., Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Mississippi, Morocco, Mozambique, Mozambique Channel I, Myanmar, Namibia, Nansei-shoto, Nansei-shoto, Nepal, Netherlands Antilles, Nevada, New Guinea, New Mexico, New South Wales, Nicaragua, Nicobar Is., Niger, Nigeria, Norfolk Is., North Carolina, Northern Provinces, Northern Territory, Ogasawara-shoto, Oklahoma, Oman, Pakistan, Palestine, Panamá, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Phoenix Is., Pitcairn Is., Puerto Rico, Queensland, Rwanda, Samoa, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Society Is., Socotra, Solomon Is., Somalia, South Australia, South Carolina, South China Sea, Southwest Caribbean, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sulawesi, Sumatera, Suriname, Swaziland, Taiwan, Taiwan, Tanzania, Texas, Thailand, Togo, Tokelau-Manihiki, Trinidad-Tobago, Tuamotu, Tubuai Is., Turks-Caicos Is., Tuvalu, Uganda, Uruguay, Utah, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Venezuelan Antilles, Victoria, Vietnam, Wake I., West Himalaya, Western Australia, Western Sahara, Windward Is., Yemen, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Introduced into:

Bermuda, Brazil North, East Himalaya, Easter Is., Free State, Italy, Maryland, Mauritius, Missouri, Niue, Rodrigues, Réunion, Sicilia, Sinai, Virginia

Boerhavia Vaill. ex L. appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Coradin, L. [6156], Brazil K001138141
Harley, R.M. [21924], Brazil K001138140

First published in Sp. Pl.: 3 (1753)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. (1996). World Checklist of Seed Plants 2(1, 2): 1-492. MIM, Deurne.
  • Struwig, M. (2011). A systematic study of Boerhavia L. and Commicarpus Standl. (Nyctaginaceae) in southern Africa: 1-287. Thesis, Potchefstroom campus of the North-West University.

Literature

Flora of West Tropical Africa

  • Sp. Pl. 3 (1753)
  • Sprague in Kew Bull. 1928: 348.

Flora Zambesiaca

  • Sp. Pl.: 3 (1753)
  • in Gen. Pl., ed. 5: 9 (1754).

Flora of Somalia

  • Codd in Bothalia 9: 113–121 (1966)
  • Flora Somalia, Vol 1, (1993) Author: by M. Thulin [updated by M. Thulin 2008]
  • Fosberg in Smithsonian Contr. Bot. 39: 1–20 (1978).

Flora of Tropical East Africa

  • Bittrich & U. Kühn in Kubitzki et al., Fam. Gen. Vasc. Pl. 2: 481 (1993)
  • Fosberg in Smithson. Contr. Bot. 39: 1–20 (1978)
  • L., Gen. Pl., ed. 5: 9 (1754)
  • Noba & Ba in Webbia 46: 327–339 (1992)
  • Sp. Pl.: 3 (1753)
  • Standl. in Contr. U.S. Nat. Herb. 12: 375 (1909)
  • Stannard in F.Z. 9(1): 20 (1988)

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of Somalia
Flora of Somalia
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0