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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Monocots
Cladus: Commelinids
Ordo: Zingiberales

Familia: Costaceae
Genus: Hellenia
Species: H. borneensis – H. globosa – H. lacera – H. sopuensis – H. speciosa

Hellenia Retz., Observ. Bot. 6: 18 (1791)

Typus: Hellenia speciosa (J.Koenig) S.R.Dutta, Pleione 7: 228 (2013). Replacing Hellenia grandiflora Retz., Observ. Bot. 6: 18 (1791), nom. superfl.


Banksea J.Koenig in A.J.Retzius, Observ. Bot. 3: 75 (1783), nom. illeg.
Tsiana J.F.Gmel., Syst. Nat. ed. 13[bis]: 9 (1791), nom. superfl.
Planera Giseke, Prael. Ord. Nat. Pl.: 202 (1792), nom. illeg.
Cheilocostus C.D.Specht, Taxon 55: 159 (2006), nom. superfl.
Pyxa Noronha, Verh. Batav. Genootsch. Kunsten 5(4): 3 (1790), nom. nud.

Native distribution areas:

China South-Central, Hainan, China Southeast, Tibet,
Eastern Asia
Indian Subcontinent
Assam, Bangladesh, East Himalaya, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, West Himalaya,
Andaman Islands, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Nicobar Islands, Thailand, Vietnam,
Borneo, Jawa, Lesser Sunda Islands, Malaya, Maluku, Philippines, Sulawesi, Sumatera,
Bismarck Archipelago, New Guinea,

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition

Retzius, A.J. 1791. Observationes Botanicae 6: 18.
Govaerts, R. 2013. Hellenia Retz., the correct name for Cheilocostus C.D.Specht (Costaceae), Phytotaxa, 151 (1): 63–64. Available on line PDF. Accessed February 8, 2014.
Govaerts, R. et al. 2014. Hellenia in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2014 Feb. 8. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2018. Hellenia. Published online. Accessed: Sept. 2 2018. 2014. Hellenia. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2014 Feb. 8.

Hellenia is a genus of plants in the Costaceae described as a genus with this name in 1791.[4][2][5] It is native to Southeast Asia, southern China, the Indian Subcontinent, New Guinea, and Queensland.[1] The type species was "H. grandiflora" Retz., which is a synonym of Hellenia speciosa.

Plants of the World Online[6] currently includes the following (with some botanists[7] preferring to retain the genus Cheilocostus):

Hellenia borneensis (A.D.Poulsen) Govaerts
Hellenia globosa (Blume) S.R.Dutta - Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo, Sumatra, Java
Hellenia lacera (Gagnep.) Govaerts
Hellenia sopuensis (Maas & H.Maas) Govaerts
Hellenia speciosa (J.Koenig) S.R.Dutta (synonym Cheilocostus speciosus) - China, Indian Subcontinent, Andaman & Nicobar, Indochina, Malaysia,, Indonesia, Philippines, New Guinea, Bismarck Archipelago, Queensland; naturalized in Mauritius, Réunion, Hawaii, Central America, West Indies

formerly included[1]

now in other genera: Alpinia Hornstedtia Plagiostachys

H. abnormis - Alpinia chinensis
H. alba - Alpinia galanga
H. allughas - Alpinia nigra
H. aquatica - Alpinia aquatica
H. arctiflora - Alpinia arctiflora
H. bracteata - Alpinia ludwigiana
H. caerulea - Alpinia caerulea
H. chinensis - Alpinia chinensis
H. gracilis - Alpinia elegans
H. melanocarpa - Alpinia aquatica
H. parviflora - Plagiostachys parviflora
H. pubiflora - Alpinia pubiflora
H. rubra - Hornstedtia rubra
H. rufa - Alpinia rufa
H. scabra - Alpinia scabra


Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
Tropicos, Hellenia Retz.
Tropicos, search for Banksia
Retzius, Anders Jahan. 1791. Observationes Botanicae 6: 18
Specht, C. D. & D. W. Stevenson. 2006. A new phylogeny-based generic classification of Costaceae (Zingiberales). Taxon 55(1): 153–163
Plants of the World Online: Hellenia (retrieved 23 September 2020)
Leong-Škorničková J, Šída O (2016) Proposal to conserve the name Cheilocostus against Hellenia and Tsiana (Costaceae). Taxon (2482) 65: 1426-1427.

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