150 species in 13 genera. Fagraea is the largest genus.
areas in South and Central America, Africa, Madagascar, Asia, Pacific, and
Rainforests, savannas, grasslands, less often
roadsides and other disturbed habitats.
lianas, shrubs, or herbs. Interpetiolar sheath or prominent line common in
Anthocleista, Lisianthius, Potalia, and
most Fagraea. Inflorescences are
dichasial cymes, clusters, umbels, or flowers are solitarily. Flowers (3-)4-5(8-16)-merous.
Stamens often with various appendages at their bases. Pistil is
sessile, often with nectary disk at base. Stigma capitate, slightly bilobed, or broadly bilamellate. Fruit
a capsule or fleshy berry.
and related plants: The Potalieae is most closely related to the
tribes Gentianeae and Helieae. Within Helieae, studies using molecular
phylogenetic methods have shown that there are three major clades; The
subtribe Faroinae (Enicostema, Neurotheca and related
genera), the subtribe Lisianthiinae (Lisianthius only), and the
subtribe Potaliinae (Anthocleista, Fagraea, and Potalia).
uses: Anthocleista and Potalia have many
ethnobotanical uses, and are primarily used to treat fevers and
inflammations. Fagraea is often used for decoration and
perfumes, and some species are also used for timber.
Fagraea, and Potalia (= subtribe Potaliinae) were earlier
included in the plant family Loganiaceae, but already Bureau (1856)
suggested that they should be placed in the Gentianaceae. Data
gathered from phylogenetic studies in the 1990's also placed these three
genera inside the Gentianaceae and the transfer was made in 1994 (Struwe
et al., 1994). These genera have many characters in common with the
gentians, such as the presence of the chemicals xanthones, special
seco-iridoids, and no alkaloids, contort corolla lobe aestivation, and a
large deletion in the trnL intron gene. However, Potalia
and Anthocleista have pollen and flowers that are different from
most other gentians.
R. Br. (images)
Congolanthus A. Raynal
Djaloniella P. Taylor
Enicostema Blume (images)
Lisianthius P. Browne (images)
Neurotheca Salisb. ex
Oreonesion A. Raynal
Urogentias Gilg & Gilg-Ben.
A. J. M. & P. W. Leenhouts. 1980. Taxonomy. Pp. 8-96. In: A. J. M.
Leeuwenberg, editor. Engler and Prantl’s Die natürlichen
Pflanzenfamilien, Angiospermae: Ordnung Gentianales, Fam. Loganiaceae,
vol. 28b (1). Duncker and Humblot, Berlin.
L., J. W. Kadereit, J. Klackenberg, S. Nilsson, M. Thiv, K. B. von Hagen,
& V. A. Albert. 2002. Systematics, character evolution, and
biogeography of Gentianaceae, including a new tribal and subtribal
classification. Pp. 21-309. In: L. Struwe & V. A. Albert (eds.),
Gentianaceae: Systematics and Natural History, Cambridge University Press,
© Lena Struwe, 2003.