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This genus is accepted, and is native to South America.
A specimen from Kew's Herbarium


Rapini, A., Fontella-Pereira, J., de Lamare, E.H. & Liede-Schumann, S. (2004). Taxonomy of Peplonia (Including Gonioanthela) and a Reinterpretation of Orthosieae (Asclepiadoideae, Apocynaceae). Kew Bulletin, 59(4), 531-539. doi:10.2307/4110907

These two environments have been extensively exploited, and only fragments of the native vegetation now remain. The group is therefore seriously threatened, and particular attention should be paid to species such as P. riedelii, endemic to the city of Rio de Janeiro and not recollected for over forty years.
The genus is endemic to Brazil, occurring in the southern, southeastern and northeastern (only in Bahia) regions, mainly close to the coast. The centre of diversity of the genus is in Rio de Janeiro, in the central part of its range. Four species are represented in this state, namely, Peplonia asteria, P. axillaris, P. organensis and P. riedelii. Only P. asteria and especially P. bradeana reach the extreme north of the genus distribution, in the state of Bahia, and only P. axillaris reaches the extreme south, in the state of Rio Grande do Sul.
Although some species may be found more to the interior of Brazil, most occur in Atlantic rain forest and restinga (the sandy plains along the coastline).
Morphology General Habit
Twining vines, glabrous or almost so; leaves usually elliptic, oblong, ovate or lanceolate (narrowly ovate), often subcoriaceous and discolorous
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers white, greenish or yellowish; corolla urceolate to rotate, abaxially glabrous, adaxially puberulent, lobes usually barbate to barbellate in the basal half
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corona
Corona double, externally urceolate with lobes fused almost to the top, enclosing the gynostegium and the internal five free corona lobes, or, more frequently, corona simple, five-lobed
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Gynoecium Style
Style head mammillate to apiculate
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Pollinia
Pollinia pendent
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Follicles fusiform- acuminate, glabrous; seeds comose.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescences axillary, usually opposite, often with a short, bifurcate peduncle
Peplonia can be recognised by its habit and branching pattern - almost glabrous vines with axillary, opposite inflorescences, one of which generally aborts in P. asteria. The genus was formerly recognised by the unique corona of P. asteria. In this species, the corona is double, with external lobes fused almost to the apex, and the internal free lobes fused to the anthers and to the external segment of the corona. This typical corona is an autapomorphy of P. asteria; it does not establish any pattern of relationship between species, and is not informative at the generic level. The double corona of Peplonia asteria, in contrast to the simple corona of the five species previously placed in Gonioanthela (e.g. P. axillaris), might be considered a modification of the double corona found in Macroditassa. In this case, the relationship between Peplonia and Macroditassa might be closer than that between Peplonia and Gonioanthela. However, as the case of Sarcostemma and Cynanchum (Liede & Kunze 2002) has shown, a double corona has arisen separately in several Asclepiadoideae groups, and, considering that there are no species of Gonioanthela or Macroditassa with an intermediate stage of corona lobes, a more likely alternative is an independent evolution of the double corona in Macroditassa and P. asteria.
P. nitida Decne. [= P. asteria (Vell.) Fontella & E. A. Schwarz]

Native to:

Bolivia, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, Paraguay, Peru

Peplonia Decne. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Candolle, Prodr. 8: 545 (1844)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R., Nic Lughadha, E., Black, N., Turner, R. & Paton, A. (2021). The World Checklist of Vascular Plants, a continuously updated resource for exploring global plant diversity. Scientific Data 8: 215.

Kew Backbone Distributions
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

Kew Bulletin
Kew Bulletin

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. Published on the Internet at and
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.