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Frangipani flowers.jpg
Plumeria sp.
Scientific classification Red Pencil Icon.png
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Rauvolfioideae
Tribe: Plumerieae
L. [1]

See text.

Synonyms [2]
  • PlumieriaScop.

Plumeria ( /plˈmɛriə/ ) is a genus of flowering plants in the dogbane family, Apocynaceae. [1] Most species are deciduous shrubs or small trees. The species variously are indigenous to Thailand, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Asia, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, and as far south as Brazil, but are grown as cosmopolitan ornamentals in warm regions. [2] [3] Common names for plants in the genus vary widely according to region, variety, and whim, but Frangipani or variations on that theme are the most common. Plumeria also is used directly as a common name, especially in horticultural circles. [4]

A genus is a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms, as well as viruses, in biology. In the hierarchy of biological classification, genus comes above species and below family. In binomial nomenclature, the genus name forms the first part of the binomial species name for each species within the genus.

Flowering plant clade of flowering plants (in APG I-III)

The flowering plants, also known as angiosperms, Angiospermae or Magnoliophyta, are the most diverse group of land plants, with 64 orders, 416 families, approximately 13,164 known genera and c. 369,000 known species. Like gymnosperms, angiosperms are seed-producing plants. However, they are distinguished from gymnosperms by characteristics including flowers, endosperm within the seeds, and the production of fruits that contain the seeds. Etymologically, angiosperm means a plant that produces seeds within an enclosure; in other words, a fruiting plant. The term comes from the Greek words angeion and sperma ("seed").

<i>Apocynum</i> genus of plants

Apocynum, commonly known as dogbane or Indian hemp, is a genus of the plant family of the Apocynaceae with seven species. Its name is from the Greek: apo, away and cyno, attributed to its toxicity. The genus is native to North America, temperate Asia, and SE Europe.



Plumeria flowers are most fragrant at night in order to lure sphinx moths to pollinate them. The flowers yield no nectar, however, and simply trick their pollinators. The moths inadvertently pollinate them by transferring pollen from flower to flower in their fruitless search for nectar. [5] . Insects or human pollination can help create new varieties of plumeria. Plumeria trees from cross pollinated seeds may show characteristics of the mother tree or their flowers might just have a totally new look.[ citation needed ]

Sphingidae family of insects (moths)

The Sphingidae are a family of moths (Lepidoptera), commonly known as hawk moths, sphinx moths, and hornworms; it includes about 1,450 species. It is best represented in the tropics, but species are found in every region. They are moderate to large in size and are distinguished among moths for their rapid, sustained flying ability. Their narrow wings and streamlined abdomens are adaptations for rapid flight. The family was named by French zoologist Pierre André Latreille in 1802.

Nectar sugar-rich liquid produced by many flowering plants

Nectar is a sugar-rich liquid produced by plants in glands called nectaries, either within the flowers with which it attracts pollinating animals, or by extrafloral nectaries, which provide a nutrient source to animal mutualists, which in turn provide antiherbivore protection. Common nectar-consuming pollinators include mosquitoes, hoverflies, wasps, bees, butterflies and moths, hummingbirds, honeyeaters and bats. Nectar plays an important role in the foraging economics and overall evolution of nectar-eating species; for example, nectar and its properties are responsible for the differential evolution of the African honey bee, A. m. scutellata and the western honey bee.

Plumeria species may be propagated easily by cutting leafless stem tips in spring. Cuttings are allowed to dry at the base before planting in well-drained soil. Cuttings are particularly susceptible to rot in moist soil. One optional method to root cuttings is applying rooting hormone to the clean fresh-cut end to enable callusing. Plumeria cuttings could also be propagated by grafting a cutting to an already rooted system. [6] The Plumeria Society of America lists 368 registered cultivars of Plumeria as of 2009. [7]

Plant propagation

Plant propagation is the process of growing new plants from a variety of sources: seeds, cuttings, and other plant parts. Plant propagation can also refer to the artificial or natural dispersal of plants.

Grafting process of inserting tissues from one plant into those of another

Grafting or graftage is a horticultural technique whereby tissues of plants are joined so as to continue their growth together. The upper part of the combined plant is called the scion while the lower part is called the rootstock. The success of this joining requires that the vascular tissue grow together and such joining is called inosculation. The technique is most commonly used in asexual propagation of commercially grown plants for the horticultural and agricultural trades.

Etymology and common names

The genus is named in honor of the seventeenth-century French botanist Charles Plumier, who traveled to the New World documenting many plant and animal species. [8] The common name "frangipani" comes from a sixteenth-century marquis of the noble family in Italy who claimed to invent a plumeria-scented perfume, [9] but in reality made a synthetic perfume that was said at the time to resemble the odor of the recently discovered flowers. [10] Many English speakers also simply use the generic name "plumeria".

Charles Plumier French botanist

Charles Plumier was a French botanist, after whom the Frangipani genus Plumeria is named. Plumier is considered one of the most important of the botanical explorers of his time. He made three botanizing expeditions to the West Indies, which resulted in a massive work Nova Plantarum Americanarum Genera (1703–04) and was appointed botanist to king Louis XIV of France.

Frangipani family noble family

The Frangipani family was a powerful Roman patrician clan in the Middle Ages. The family was firmly Guelph in sympathy. The name has many spellings, which include Frangipane, Freiapane, Fricapane and Fresapane. In his Trattatello in laude di Dante, Boccaccio traces the descent of Dante from the family.

Perfume mixture used to produce a pleasant smell

Perfume is a mixture of fragrant essential oils or aroma compounds, fixatives and solvents, used to give the human body, animals, food, objects, and living-spaces an agreeable scent. It is usually in liquid form and used to give a pleasant scent to a person's body. Ancient texts and archaeological excavations show the use of perfumes in some of the earliest human civilizations. Modern perfumery began in the late 19th century with the commercial synthesis of aroma compounds such as vanillin or coumarin, which allowed for the composition of perfumes with smells previously unattainable solely from natural aromatics alone.

In Persian, the name is yas or yasmin. In Bengali the name is "Kath Champa", in Hindi, champa, in Gujarati champo, in Marathi chafa (चाफा), in Telugu deva ganneru (divine nerium), in Meitei khagi leihao. In Hawaii, the name is melia, although common usage is still 'plumeria'. In Malayalam it is called Chempakam. In Sri Lanka, it is referred to as araliya (අරලිය) and (in English) as the 'Temple Tree'. In Khmer, it known as "Champa" (also sounds like the country Champa ). In Cantonese, it is known as gaai daan fa or the 'egg yolk flower' tree. The name lilawadi (originating from Thai) [11] [12] is found occasionally. In Indonesia, where the flower has been commonly associated with Balinese culture, it is known as kamboja, in Bali especially it is known as jepun. In French Polynesia it is called tipanie [13] or tipanier [14] and tīpani in the Cook Islands. [15] In the Philippines it is called kalachuchi. In the Kannada dialect spoken in the Old Mysore region of Karnataka of southern India, the flower is called Devaga Nagale, devaganagalu or devakanagalu (God's Plumeria). In Vietnam; "cây sứ" which means the porcelain tree.

Persian language Western Iranian language

Persian, also known by its endonym Farsi, is one of the Western Iranian languages within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European language family. It is a pluricentric language primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and some other regions which historically were Persianate societies and considered part of Greater Iran. It is written right to left in the Persian alphabet, a modified variant of the Arabic script.

Bengali language Indo-Aryan language spoken by the Bengali people of South Asia

Bengali, also known by its endonym Bangla, is an Indo-Aryan language primarily spoken by the Bengalis in South Asia. It is the official and most widely spoken language of Bangladesh and second most widely spoken of the 22 scheduled languages of India, behind Hindi. In 2015, 160 million speakers were reported for Bangladesh, and the 2011 Indian census counted another 100 million.

Hindi An official language of India

Hindi, or Modern Standard Hindi is a standardised and Sanskritised register of the Hindustani language. Hindi, written in the Devanagari script, is one of the official languages of India, along with the English language. It is one of the 22 scheduled languages of the Republic of India. However, it is not the national language of India because no language was given such a status in the Indian constitution.

In culture

In Mesoamerica, plumerias have carried complex symbolic significance for over two millennia, with striking examples from the Maya and Aztec periods into the present. Among the Maya, plumerias have been associated with deities representing life and fertility, and the flowers also became strongly connected with female sexuality. Nahuatl-speaking people during the height of the Aztec Empire used plumerias to signify elite status, and planted plumeria trees in the gardens of nobles. [16]

Mesoamerica Cultural area in the Americas

Mesoamerica is a historical region and cultural area in North America. It extends from approximately central Mexico through Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and northern Costa Rica, and within this region pre-Columbian societies flourished before the Spanish colonization of the Americas. In the 16th century, European diseases like smallpox and measles caused the deaths of upwards of 90% of the indigenous people. It is one of five areas in the world where ancient civilization arose independently, and the second in the Americas along with Norte Chico (Caral-Supe) in present-day Peru, in the northern coastal region.

Maya civilization Mesoamerican former civilization

The Maya civilization was a Mesoamerican civilization developed by the Maya peoples, and noted for its logosyllabic script—the most sophisticated and highly developed writing system in pre-Columbian Americas—as well as for its art, architecture, mathematics, calendar, and astronomical system. The Maya civilization developed in an area that encompasses southeastern Mexico, all of Guatemala and Belize, and the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador. This region consists of the northern lowlands encompassing the Yucatán Peninsula, and the highlands of the Sierra Madre, running from the Mexican state of Chiapas, across southern Guatemala and onwards into El Salvador, and the southern lowlands of the Pacific littoral plain.

Nahuatl, known historically as Aztec, is a language or group of languages of the Uto-Aztecan language family. Varieties of Nahuatl are spoken by about 1.7 million Nahua peoples, most of whom live in central Mexico.

Frangipani trunk in Kolkata, West Bengal, India Frangipani without leaves W IMG 3624.jpg
Frangipani trunk in Kolkata, West Bengal, India
Leaves Leaves I IMG 8331.jpg
Flowering tree of Plumeria rubra decorating a garden in Tel Aviv, Israel. Plumeria-tree-Tel-Aviv-ZE-MK-1.jpg
Flowering tree of Plumeria rubra decorating a garden in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Hot pink frangipani in full bloom Hot pink frangipani in full bloom.jpg
Hot pink frangipani in full bloom

These are now common naturalized plants in southern and southeastern Asia. In local folk beliefs they provide shelter to ghosts and demons. They are also associated with temples in both Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist cultures.

In several Pacific islands, such as Tahiti, Fiji, Samoa, Hawaii, New Zealand, Tonga, and the Cook Islands plumeria species are used for making leis. [17] In modern Polynesian culture, the flower can be worn by women to indicate their relationship status—over the right ear if seeking a relationship, and over the left if taken. [18]

Plumeria rubra is the national flower of Nicaragua, where it is known under the local name "sacuanjoche".

Plumeria alba is the national flower of Laos, where it is known under the local name champa or "dok champa".

In Bengali culture, most white flowers, and in particular, plumeria (Bengali, চম্পা chômpa or চাঁপা chãpa), are associated with funerals and death.

Also in the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia, the plumeria is often associated with ghosts and cemeteries. [19] Plumerias often are planted on burial grounds in all three nations. They are also common ornamental plants in houses, parks, parking lots and other open-air establishments in the Philippines. Balinese Hindus use the flowers in their temple offerings. The plumeria's fragrance is also associated with the pontianak, an evil vampiric spirit of a dead mother in Malaysian-Indonesian folklores.

Indian incenses fragranced with Plumeria rubra have "champa" in their names. For example, Nag Champa is an incense containing a fragrance combining plumeria and sandalwood. While plumeria is an ingredient in Indian champa incense, the extent of its use varies between family recipes. Most champa incenses also incorporate other tree resins, such as Halmaddi ( Ailanthus triphysa ) and benzoin resin, as well as other floral ingredients, including champaca ( Magnolia champaca ), geranium ( Pelargonium graveolens ), and vanilla ( Vanilla planifolia ) to produce a more intense, plumeria-like aroma. [20]

In the Western Ghats of Karnataka, the bride and groom exchange garlands of cream-coloured plumeria during weddings. Red colored flowers are not used in weddings. Plumeria plants are found in most of the temples in these regions.

In Sri Lankan tradition, plumeria is associated with worship. One of the heavenly damsels in the frescoes of the fifth-century rock fortress Sigiriya holds a 5-petalled flower in her right hand that is indistinguishable from plumeria. [21]

In Eastern Africa, frangipani are sometimes referred to in Swahili love poems. [22]

Some species of plumeria have been studied for their potential medicinal value. [23]

There are a few more new hybrids now (Nui Delight, Nui's Diamond Rose, Nui's Dragon Heart, Nui's Light of Hope), named after Nui Leera from Thailand, who has planted over 100,000 plumeria seeds (2018).


The genus Plumeria includes about a dozen accepted species, and one or two dozen open to review, with over a hundred regarded as synonyms. [24]

Plumeria species have a milky latex that, like many other Apocynaceae contains poisonous compounds that irritate the eyes and skin. [25] The various species differ in their leaf shape and arrangement. The leaves of Plumeria alba are narrow and corrugated, whereas leaves of Plumeria pudica have an elongated shape and glossy, dark-green color. Plumeria pudica is one of the everblooming types with non-deciduous, evergreen leaves. Another species that retains leaves and flowers in winter is Plumeria obtusa; though its common name is "Singapore," it is originally from Colombia.[ citation needed ]

Accepted species

Plants of the World Online [26] lists the following:

  1. Plumeria alba L. - Puerto Rico, Lesser Antilles
  2. Plumeria clusioides Griseb.
  3. Plumeria cubensis Urb.
  4. Plumeria ekmanii Urb.
  5. Plumeria emarginata Griseb.
  6. Plumeria filifolia Griseb. - Cuba
  7. Plumeria inodora Jacq. - Guyana, Colombia, Venezuela (incl Venezuelan islands in Caribbean)
  8. Plumeria krugii Urb.
  9. Plumeria lanata Britton
  10. Plumeria magna Zanoni & M.M.Mejía - Dominican Republic
  11. Plumeria montana Britton & P.Wilson
  12. Plumeria obtusa L. - West Indies including Bahamas; southern Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Florida; naturalized in China
  13. Plumeria pudica Jacq. - Panama, Colombia, Venezuela (incl Venezuelan islands in Caribbean)
  14. Plumeria rubra L. - Mexico, Central America, Venezuela; naturalized in China, the Himalayas, West Indies, South America, and numerous oceanic islands
  15. Plumeria sericifolia C.Wright ex Griseb.
  16. Plumeria × stenophylla Urb. - Mexico and Central America
  17. Plumeria subsessilis A.DC. - Hispaniola
  18. Plumeria trinitensis Britton
  19. Plumeria tuberculata G.Lodd.
  20. Plumeria venosa Britton


Formerly included in genus [2]

Related Research Articles

<i>Rauvolfia</i> genus of plants

Rauvolfia is a genus of evergreen trees and shrubs, commonly known as devil peppers, in the dogbane family, Apocynaceae. The genus is named to honor Leonhard Rauwolf. The genus can mainly be found in tropical regions of Africa, Asia, Latin America, and various oceanic islands.

<i>Calyptranthes</i> genus of plants

Calyptranthes is a genus of flowering plants in the family Myrtaceae. They are known commonly as lidflowers, spicewoods, and mountainbays. There are about 100 species.

<i>Himatanthus</i> genus of plants

Himatanthus is a genus of flowering plant in the family Apocynaceae, first described as a genus in 1819. It is native to Panama and South America.

  1. Himatanthus articulatus(Vahl) Woodson - widespread from Panama east to French Guiana and south to Bolivia
  2. Himatanthus attenuatus(Benth.) Woodson - Venezuela, Colombia, N Brazil
  3. Himatanthus bracteatus(A.DC.) Woodson - Venezuela, Colombia, Guianas, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador
  4. Himatanthus drasticus(Mart.) Plumel - Guianas, Brazil
  5. Himatanthus lancifolius(Müll.Arg.) Woodson
  6. Himatanthus obovatus(Müll.Arg.) Woodson - Brazil, Bolivia, Guyana
  7. Himatanthus phagedaenicus(Mart.) Woodson - S Venezuela, NW Brazil
  8. Himatanthus semilunatusMarkgr. - Amazon Basin
  9. Himatanthus stenophyllusPlumel - Colombia, NW Brazil, Guyana, Suriname
  10. Himatanthus tarapotensis(K.Schum. ex Markgr.) Plumel - Colombia, Bolivia, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador

Exostema is a genus of flowering plants in the family Rubiaceae. It consists of trees and shrubs, endemic to the neotropics, with most of the species occurring in the West Indies.

Forsteronia is a genus of plant in family Apocynaceae, first described as a genus in 1818. It is native to South America, Central America, Mexico, and the West Indies.

<i>Plumeria rubra</i> species of plant

Plumeria rubra is a deciduous plant species belonging to the genus Plumeria. Originally native to Mexico, Central America, Colombia and Venezuela, it has been widely cultivated in subtropical and tropical climates worldwide and is a popular garden and park plant, as well as being used in temples and cemeteries. It grows as a spreading tree to 7–8 m (23–26 ft) high and wide, and is flushed with fragrant flowers of shades of pink, white and yellow over the summer and autumn.

<i>Senegalia</i> genus of plants

Senegalia is a genus of flowering plants in the legume family, Fabaceae. It belongs to the subfamily Mimosoideae. Until 2005, its species were considered members of Acacia. The genus is still considered polyphyletic and will require further division. Senegalia can be distinguished from other acacias by its spicate inflorescences and non-spinescent stipules.

Rauvolfioideae subfamily of plants

Rauvolfioideae is a subfamily of the flowering plant family Apocynaceae. Many species are woody lianas, others are shrubs or perennial herbs.

<i>Daphnopsis</i> genus of plants

Daphnopsis is a plant genus in the family Thymelaeaceae. There are 50 to 65 species distributed in the Neotropics. They are shrubs and small trees with tubular or bell-shaped flowers.

<i>Coussarea</i> genus of plants

Coussarea is a genus of flowering plants in the family Rubiaceae. The genus is found from southern Mexico to tropical America.

Mesechites is a genus of plant in family Apocynaceae first described as a genus in 1860. It is native to Mexico, Central America, South America, and the West Indies.

  1. Mesechites acuminatus Müll.Arg. - Peru
  2. Mesechites angustifolius(Poir.) Miers - Hispaniola
  3. Mesechites citrifolius(Kunth) Woodson - Colombia
  4. Mesechites mansoanus(A.DC.) Woodson - Paraguay, Brazil
  5. Mesechites minimus(Britton & P.Wilson) Woodson - Cuba
  6. Mesechites repens(Jacq.) Miers - Hispaniola, Navassa Island, Jamaica
  7. Mesechites roseus(A.DC.) Miers - Cuba
  8. Mesechites trifidus(Jacq.) Müll.Arg. - widespread from Tamaulipas in NE Mexico south to Paraguay + N Argentina
  1. Mesechites andrieuxii(Müll.Arg.) Miers = Mandevilla convolvulacea(A.DC.) Hemsl.
  2. Mesechites angustatusMiers = Mandevilla benthamii(A.DC.) K.Schum.
  3. Mesechites brownei(A.DC.) Miers = Mandevilla torosa(Jacq.) Woodson
  4. Mesechites dichotomus(Kunth) Miers = Laubertia boissieriA.DC.
  5. Mesechites guayaquilensisMiers = Mandevilla subsagittata(Ruiz & Pav.) Woodson
  6. Mesechites guianensis(A.DC.) Miers = Mandevilla rugellosa(Rich.) L.Allorge
  7. Mesechites hastatusMiers = Mandevilla subsagittata(Ruiz & Pav.) Woodson
  8. Mesechites hirtellulusMiers = Mandevilla oaxacana(A.DC.) Hemsl.
  9. Mesechites hirtellus(Kunth) Miers = Mandevilla subsagittata(Ruiz & Pav.) Woodson
  10. Mesechites jasminiflorus(M.Martens & Galeotti) Miers = Mandevilla subsagittata(Ruiz & Pav.) Woodson
  11. Mesechites lanceolatus(R.Br.) Miers = Parsonsia lanceolataR.Br.
  12. Mesechites oaxacanus(A.DC.) Miers = Mandevilla oaxacana(A.DC.) Hemsl.
  13. Mesechites ovalis(Ruiz & Pav. ex Markgr.) Pichon = Allomarkgrafia ovalis(Ruiz & Pav. ex Markgr.) Woodson
  14. Mesechites plumeriiflorus(Woodson) Pichon = Allomarkgrafia plumeriifloraWoodson
  15. Mesechites siphiliticus(L.f.) Lemée = Tabernaemontana siphilitica(L.f.) Leeuwenb.
  16. Mesechites subcarnosus(Benth.) Miers = Mandevilla subcarnosa(Benth.) Woodson
  17. Mesechites sulphureus(Vell.) Müll.Arg. = Prestonia coalita(Vell.) Woodson
  18. Mesechites torulosus(L.) Miers =Mandevilla torosa(Jacq.) Woodson
<i>Rhabdadenia</i> genus of plants

Rhabdadenia is a genus of plant in family Apocynaceae first described as a genus in 1860. It is native to South America, Central America, southern Mexico, the West Indies, and Florida.

  1. Rhabdadenia barbata(Desv. ex Ham.) Miers = Pentalinon luteum(L.) B.F.Hansen & Wunderlin
  2. Rhabdadenia berteroi(A.DC.) Müll.Arg. = Angadenia berteroi(A.DC.) Miers
  3. Rhabdadenia campestris(Vell.) Miers = Mandevilla hirsuta(Rich.) K.Schum.
  4. Rhabdadenia corallicolaSmall = Angadenia berteroi(A.DC.) Miers
  5. Rhabdadenia cubensisMüll.Arg. = Angadenia berteroi(A.DC.) Miers
  6. Rhabdadenia laxifloraMiers = Pentalinon luteum(L.) B.F.Hansen & Wunderlin
  7. Rhabdadenia lindenianaMüll.Arg. = Angadenia lindeniana(Müll.Arg.) Miers
  8. Rhabdadenia lucidaMiers = Odontadenia nitida(Vahl) Müll.Arg.
  9. Rhabdadenia polyneuraUrb = Odontadenia polyneura(Urb.) Woodson
  10. Rhabdadenia sagrae(A.DC.) Müll.Arg. ex Griseb. = Angadenia berteroi(A.DC.) Miers
  11. Rhabdadenia wrightianaMüll.Arg. = Neobracea valenzuelana(A.Rich.) Urb.

Secondatia is a genus of plant in family Apocynaceae first described as a genus in 1844. It is native to Jamaica and South America.

<i>Jacquemontia</i> genus of plants

Jacquemontia (clustervine) is a plant genus in the morning glory family Convolvulaceae.


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  28. 1 2 3 4 The Plant List (RBG, Kew, MBG) access date: 2015-02-26