6559.000 Carissa L.

Description of the genus

Shrubs or small trees, with white latex and with simple or forked spines. Branches repeatedly dichotomously branched. Stipules 0. Leaves opposite. Flowers in terminal corymbs or 1-5-flowered cymes. Calyx lobes imbricate, free to base. Corolla salver-shaped; tube cylindric; lobes contorted, overlapping either to left or right. Stamens inserted at middle or towards top of corolla tube; anthers subsessile, glabrous. Ovary with 2 carpels, with 1-4 or rarely many ovules per loculus. Fruit an ellipsoid or ovoid berry. Seeds discoid or flattened-ellipsoid, velutinous.

Comment: In the paper Series of revisions of Apocynaceae XLIX. Carissa L., Leeuwenberg & Van Dilst (2001), the authors make various changes to taxa of Carissa occurring in the Flora Zambesiaca region. They sink Carissa edulis, and many other Carissa species, under C. spinarum L., sink C. praetermissa under C. macrocarpa and combine C. bispinosa subsp. bispinosa and C. bispinosa subsp. zambesiensis under C. bispinosa. We feel that this approach lumps too many entities together and have retained the treatment in FZ 7(1).

Worldwide: 37 species in the warm Old World, eastwards to Australia and New Caledonia

Zimbabwe: 4 taxa.

Insects associated with this genus:
Asota speciosa (Specious tiger) Larval foodplant
Carissa spinarum

Links to taxa:     View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this genus

SpeciesFZ divisionsContent
bispinosa (L.) Desf. ex Brenan subsp. bispinosa var. bispinosa W,C,SDescription, Image
bispinosa (L.) Desf. ex Brenan subsp. zambesiensis KupichaEDescription, Image
spinarum L.N,W,C,E,SDescription, Image
tetramera (Sacleux) StapfSDescription, Image

Other sources of information about Carissa:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Carissa
Flora of Caprivi: Carissa
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Carissa
Flora of Malawi: Carissa
Flora of Mozambique: Carissa
Flora of Zambia: Carissa
Flora of Zimbabwe: cultivated Carissa

External websites:

African Plants: A Photo Guide (Senckenberg): Carissa
BHL (Biodiversity Heritage Library): Carissa
EOL (Encyclopedia of Life): Carissa
GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): Carissa
Google: Web - Images - Scholar
iNaturalist: Carissa
IPNI (International Plant Names Index): Carissa
JSTOR Plant Science: Carissa
Mansfeld World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops: Carissa
Plants of the World Online: Carissa
Tropicos: Carissa
Wikipedia: Carissa

Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-24

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2024). Flora of Zimbabwe: Genus page: Carissa.
https://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/speciesdata/genus.php?genus_id=1103, retrieved 26 May 2024

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