Data mode


Sign up

Copy permalink to share

Matelea Aublet. Subfamily: Asclepiadoideae. Spinypod.

Key to Matelea

A genus of about 75-160 species (by current overly broad circumscription), herbs and herbaceous vines, primarily tropical and restricted to the New World. The genus as generally circumscribed since Woodson (1941) is polyphyletic and very diverse. Woodson (1941) created this broad circumscription of Matelea by merging dozens of previously recognized genera, stating "I should like to lay a curse on the man who revives them without at least as much study as I have devoted". Gonolobus and Chthamalia are here removed, and at least Matelea alabamensis will also be removed from Matelea. Endress et al. (2018) retain Odontostephana, Edisonia, and Cyclodon for our remaining species, excluding Matelea from the southeastern United States flora.

ID notes:Matelea and Gonolobus are difficult to distinguish without flowers or fruits. Fresh Matelea leaves do not have a strong odor when crushed; Gonolobus leaves have a disagreeable odor of peanut butter or burnt-and-buttered popcorn. Gonolobus typically exhibits (at least some) leaves more drawn out in length with margins more or less parallel for some length before curving toward the tip (vs. in Matelea usually more rounded/ovate, curved throughout, and somewhat Ipomoea-like).

Ref: Drapalik (1969); Endress et al. (2018) In Kadereit & Bittrich (2018); Fishbein & McDonnell (2023) In Flora of North America Editorial Committee (2023c); McDonnell & Fishbein (2016); Singhurst & Holmes (2021); Woodson (1941). Show full citations.

Show in key(s)

Show parent family

Show species in Matelea

Your browser does not support SVGs

Hover over a shape, letter, icon, or arrow on the map for definition or see the legend. Data for arrows not developed for genera and families which may have species only occurring outside the flora area.

image of plant© Richard & Teresa Ware | Matelea decipiens | Original Image ⭷


See something wrong or missing on about Matelea? Let us know here: (Please include your name and email if at all complicated so we can clarify if needed.)

Cite as...