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Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Lamiids
Ordo: Gentianales

Familia: Rubiaceae
Subfamilia: Rubioideae
Tribus: Spermacoceae
Genus: Kadua
Subgenera: K. subg. Gouldia – K. subg. Kadua

Species: K. acuminata – K. affinis – K. axillaris – K. centranthoides – K. cookiana – K. cordata – K. coriacea – K. degeneri – K. elatior – K. fluviatilis – K. flynnii – K. foggiana – K. foliosa – K. formosa – K. grantii – K. haupuensis – K. knudsenii – K. laxiflora – K. lichtlei – K. littoralis – K. lucei – K. munroi – K. nukuhivensis – K. parvula – K. raiateensis – K. rapensis – K. romanzoffiensis – K. st-johnii – K. tahuatensis – K. tryblium

Kadua Cham. & Schltdl., Linnaea 4: 157. (1829)

Type species: Kadua acuminata Cham. & Schltdl., Linnaea 4: 163. (1829); lectotypified by Schumann (1891: 24) fide Terrell & al. (2005: 831).


Hedyotis subg. Kadua (Cham. & Schltdl.) Fosberg, Bernice P. Bishop Mus. Bull. 174: 69. (1943)

Gouldia A.Gray, Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts 4: 310. (1860)
Type species: Gouldia affinis (DC.) Wilbur
Wiegmannia Meyen, Reise 2: 139. 18–23 [1935 publ. 1834]
Type species: Wiegmannia glauca Meyen

Primary references

Chamisso, A. de & Schlechtendal, D. de. 1829. De plantis in expeditione speculatoria Romanzoffiana observatis. Rubiaceae. Linnaea 4: 1–36, 129–202. BHL BHL Reference page.

Additional references

Schumann, K.M. in Engler, A. & Prantl, K. (1891) Die Natürlichen Pflanzenfamilien 4(4): 24.
Terrell, E.E., Robinson, H.E., Wagner, W.L. & Lorence, D.H. 2005. Resurrection of Genus Kadua for Hawaiian Hedyotidinae (Rubiaceae), with Emphasis on Seed and Fruit Characters and Notes on South Pacific Species. Systematic Botany 30(4): 818–833. DOI: 10.1600/036364405775097716 Paywall PDF Open access Reference page.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2021. Kadua in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Oct. 30. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2018. Kadua. Published online. Accessed: Dec. 30 2018. 2021. Kadua. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2021 Oct. 30.
USDA, ARS, Germplasm Resources Information Network. Kadua in the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN), U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. Accessed: 08-Apr-12.

Kadua is a genus of flowering plants in the family Rubiaceae. It comprises 29 species,[1] all restricted to Polynesia. Twenty-two of these are endemic to the Hawaiian Islands. Some of the species are common at high elevation. Others are single-island endemics or very rare, and a few are probably extinct. Kadua affinis is widely distributed in Hawaii and is polymorphic.[2] The type species for the genus is Kadua acuminata.[3]

Kadua was formerly included in a broadly defined and polyphyletic Hedyotis, which encompassed, in addition to Kadua, species now placed in Oldenlandia, Oldenlandiopsis, Houstonia, and other genera. Hedyotis is now circumscribed more narrowly.[4]

1 Species
2 History
3 Phylogeny
4 References
5 External links


In the following list, Kadua haupuensis is added to the species listed by Edward E. Terrell et alii.[5]

Kadua acuminata Cham. & Schltdl.
Kadua affinis (A.Gray) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua axillaris (Wawra) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua centranthoides Hook. & Arn.
Kadua cookiana Cham. & Schltdl.
Kadua cordata Cham. & Schltdl.
Kadua coriacea (Sm.) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua degeneri (Fosberg) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua elatior (H.Mann) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua fluviatilis C.N.Forbes
Kadua flynnii (W.L.Wagner & Lorence) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua foggiana (Fosberg) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua foliosa Hillebr.
Kadua formosa Hillebr.
Kadua fosbergii W.L.Wagner & D.R.Herbst

Kadua grantii (Fosberg) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua haupuensis Lorence & W.L.Wagner
Kadua knudsenii Hillebr.
Kadua laxiflora H.Mann
Kadua littoralis Hillebr.
Kadua lucei (Lorence & J.Florence) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua nukuhivensis (J.Florence & Lorence) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua parvula A.Gray
Kadua raiateensis J.W.Moore
Kadua rapensis F.Br.
Kadua romanzoffiensis Cham. & Schltdl.
Kadua st-johnii (B.C.Stone & Lane) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua tahuatensis (Lorence & J.Florence) W.L.Wagner & Lorence
Kadua tryblium D.R.Herbst & W.L.Wagner

Kadua fluviatilis, endemic to the Hawaiian Islands, endangered, Oʻahu (Cultivated)

The genus Kadua was erected in 1829 by Adelbert von Chamisso and Diederich von Schlechtendal.[6] They named it for Kadu, a native of Ulea, one of the Marshall Islands. Kadu was a friend of von Chamisso and provided valuable assistance to the 1815–1818 expedition led by Otto von Kotzebue. The generic name Kadua fell into disuse in the 20th century, because most authors considered it to be a synonym of Hedyotis. In 1999, twenty species of Kadua were described as species of Hedyotis in a Flora of Hawaii.[7] Kadua flynnii was described in 1998,[8] and Kadua haupuensis in 2010.[9] Kadua was resurrected in 2005.[5] This taxonomic change was corroborated by molecular phylogenetic studies of the tribe Spermacoceae in 2008 and 2009.[4][10]

The following phylogenetic tree is partly based on a phylogenetic analysis of DNA sequences,[10] and partly inferred from the classification followed in a 2005 paper.[5]


Kadua tryblium

Kadua affinis

Kadua fosbergii

Kadua axillaris

Kadua acuminata

Kadua fluviatilis

Kadua rapensis

Kadua coriacea

Kadua formosa

Kadua knudsenii

Kadua foggiana

Kadua centranthoides

Kadua parvula

Kadua degeneri

Kadua littoralis

Kadua laxiflora

Kadua cordata

Kadua elatior

Kadua flynnii

Kadua haupuensis


Kadua At: World Checklist of Rubiaceae At: Kew Gardens Website. (see External links below).
David J. Mabberley. 2008. Mabberley's Plant-Book third edition (2008). Cambridge University Press: UK. ISBN 978-0-521-82071-4 p. 448
Kadua In: Index Nominum Genericorum. In: Regnum Vegetabile (see External links below).
Groeninckx, Inge; Dessein, Steven; Ochoterena, Helga; Persson, Claes; Motley, Timothy J.; Kårehed, Jesper; Bremer, Birgitta; Huysmans, Suzy; Smets, Erik (2009). "Phylogeny of the Herbaceous Tribe Spermacoceae (Rubiaceae) Based on Plastid DNA Data". Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden. 96: 109–132. doi:10.3417/2006201. S2CID 56042261.
Terrell, Edward E.; Robinson, Harold E.; Wagner, Warren L.; Lorence, David H. (2005). "Resurrection of Genus Kadua for Hawaiian Hedyotidinae (Rubiaceae), with Emphasis on Seed and Fruit Characters and Notes on South Pacific Species". Systematic Botany. 30 (4): 818. doi:10.1600/036364405775097716. S2CID 85617802.
Adelbert von Chamisso and Diederich von Schlechtendal. 1829. Linnaea 4:157. (see External links below)
Warren L. Wagner, Derral R. Herbst, and Sy H. Sohmer. Manual of the Flowering Plants of Hawaii, Revised Edition, 1999. Bishop Museum Press: Hololulu, HI, USA.
Warren L. Wagner and David H. Lorence. 1998. "A New, Dioecious Species of Hedyotis (Rubiaceae) from Kauaʻi, Hawaiian Islands, and the Taxonomy of Kauaʻi Hedyotis schlechtendahliana Resolved". Novon 8(3):311–317.
David H. Lorence, Warren L. Wagner, and William G. Laidlaw. 2010. "Kadua haupuensis (Rubiaceae: Spermacoceae), a new endemic species from Kauaʻi, Hawaiian Islands". Brittonia 62(2):137-144. doi:10.1007/s12228-009-9103-y
Karehed, J; Groeninckx, I; Dessein, S; Motley, T; Bremer, B (2008). "The phylogenetic utility of chloroplast and nuclear DNA markers and the phylogeny of the Rubiaceae tribe Spermacoceae". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 49 (3): 843–66. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2008.09.025. PMID 18950720.

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