Skip to main content
  1. Family: Papaveraceae Juss.
    1. Argemone L.

      1. This genus is accepted, and its native range is U.S.A. to Central America, Hawaiian Islands, Bolivia to S. South America.


    Papaveraceae, G. L. Lucas (East African Herbarium). Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1962

    Annual or biennial herbs, sometimes perennial and shrubby
    Stems glaucous, erect to 1.5 m. high, unarmed to prickly
    Leaves glaucous, sessile, pinnately lobed or incised with a dentate prickly margin, and often the surface prickly
    Flowers large, terminal or cymose
    Sepals (2–)3(–6) with a subterminal terete horn ; outer surface usually sparsely prickly
    Petals 6, normally in 2 whorls of 3, usually white or yellow
    Anthers basifixed ; filaments filiform
    Carpels (3–)4–6(–7) ; stigmatic lobes same number as carpels and opposite the placentas
    Capsule opening by means of valves
    Seeds brown-black, up to 3 mm. in diameter ; embryo larger than in other genera, i.e. about 2/3 seed-length.

    Papaveraceae, A. W. Exell. Flora Zambesiaca 1:1. 1960

    Annual or biennial herbs (rarely perennial and somewhat shrubby) with yellow latex.
    Leaves pinnate-lobed or incised, usually spiny.
    Sepals 3, horned at the apex.
    Petals 6.
    Stamens numerous.
    Carpels 3 (4–6); stigmas the same number as the carpels and alternating with the placentas.
    Capsule usually spiny.



    Native to:

    Alabama, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Argentina South, Arizona, Belize, Bolivia, California, Chile Central, Chile North, Colorado, Ecuador, El Salvador, Florida, Georgia, Guatemala, Haiti, Hawaii, Honduras, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Mexican Pacific Is., Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Nicaragua, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Paraguay, Peru, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Uruguay, Utah, Wyoming

    Introduced into:

    Angola, Arkansas, Aruba, Ascension, Assam, Bahamas, Bangladesh, Benin, Bermuda, Botswana, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, Burkina, Burundi, Cameroon, Canary Is., Cape Provinces, Cape Verde, Cayman Is., China Southeast, Colombia, Connecticut, Costa Rica, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, East Himalaya, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, France, Free State, French Guiana, Galápagos, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gulf of Guinea Is., Guyana, Illinois, India, Indiana, Iran, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Jawa, Kentucky, Kenya, KwaZulu-Natal, Laccadive Is., Lebanon-Syria, Leeward Is., Lesotho, Lesser Sunda Is., Liberia, Madeira, Malawi, Malaya, Maldives, Mali, Maluku, Maryland, Masachusettes, Mauritania, Mauritius, Michigan, Missouri, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands Antilles, New Caledonia, New Guinea, New Jersey, New South Wales, New York, New Zealand North, New Zealand South, Nicobar Is., Niger, Nigeria, Niue, Norfolk Is., Northern Provinces, Northern Territory, Oman, Ontario, Pakistan, Palestine, Pennsylvania, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Queensland, Rodrigues, Réunion, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Socotra, Somalia, South Australia, Southwest Caribbean, Sri Lanka, St.Helena, Sudan, Sulawesi, Suriname, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Tasmania, Tennessee, Togo, Trinidad-Tobago, Turks-Caicos Is., Uganda, Uzbekistan, Venezuela, Venezuelan Antilles, Vermont, Victoria, Vietnam, Virginia, West Himalaya, Western Australia, Windward Is., Yemen, Zimbabwe

    Accepted Species


    Other Data

    Argemone L. appears in other Kew resources:


    First published in Sp. Pl.: 508 (1753)

    Accepted by

    • Govaerts, R. (1995). World Checklist of Seed Plants 1(1, 2): 1-483, 529. MIM, Deurne.


    Flora of West Tropical Africa

    • —F.T.A. 1: 54.

    Flora Zambesiaca

    • Gen. Pl. ed. 5: 225 (1754).
    • Sp. Pl. 1: 508 (1753)

    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Ownbey in Mem. Torr. Bot. Club 21(1) : 21 (1958)
    • Prain in J.B. 33 : 130 (1895)
    • L., Gen. Pl., ed. 5 : 225 (1754)
    • Sp. Pl. : 508 (1753)


    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Science Photographs
    Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew