Skip to main content

This genus is accepted, and its native range is Cosmopolitan.


Polygonaceae, I. Nogueira, S. Ortiz & J.A.R. Paiva. Flora Zambesiaca 9:3. 2006

Annual or perennial erect or occasionally prostrate herbs (rarely shrubs), glabrous or hairy, often glandular.
Stems often conspicuously swollen at the nodes.
Leaves alternate, very variable in shape, always distinctly longer than wide.
Ocrea membranaceous, pale brown, reddish or hyaline, entire, often tubular, glabrous or hairy, often fringed with cilia.
Flowers hermaphrodite, rarely unisexual, in pedunculate terminal or axillary racemes, spikes, panicles or heads; bracteoles 2, fused, thinly membranous and contained within the bracts.
Perianth segments (4)5, equal or somewhat unequal in length, spirally arranged, often imbricate, free or united at the base, petaloid at least in part, with a trifid venation (the main vein flanked by 2 collateral veins arising near the base); outer segments similar to the inner.
Stamens 5–8, rarely fewer, included or not; filaments uniformly subulate or filiform, free or sometimes united at the base into a ring, but without interstaminal nectaries; anthers globose or ellipsoid, dorsifixed.
Ovary included within the perianth; styles 2(3), united at the base or rarely free; stigmas capitate.
Nut lenticular or trigonous, enclosed in the persistent perianth or protruding from it for less than half its length.

Native to:

Afghanistan, Alabama, Alaska, Albania, Alberta, Algeria, Altay, Amur, Andaman Is., Angola, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Argentina South, Arizona, Arkansas, Ascension, Assam, Austria, Azores, Bahamas, Baleares, Baltic States, Bangladesh, Belarus, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Bolivia, Borneo, Botswana, Brazil North, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, British Columbia, Bulgaria, Burkina, Burundi, Buryatiya, California, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canary Is., Cape Provinces, Cape Verde, Caprivi Strip, Cayman Is., Central African Repu, Central European Rus, Chad, Chatham Is., Chile Central, Chile North, Chile South, China North-Central, China South-Central, China Southeast, Chita, Colombia, Colorado, Comoros, Congo, Connecticut, Cook Is., Corse, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Delaware, Denmark, Desventurados Is., District of Columbia, Dominican Republic, East Aegean Is., East European Russia, East Himalaya, Easter Is., Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Finland, Florida, France, Free State, French Guiana, Føroyar, Gabon, Galápagos, Gambia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Great Britain, Greece, Greenland, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Gulf of Guinea Is., Guyana, Hainan, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Idaho, Illinois, India, Indiana, Inner Mongolia, Iowa, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Irkutsk, Italy, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Jawa, Juan Fernández Is., Kamchatka, Kansas, Kazakhstan, Kazan-retto, Kentucky, Kenya, Khabarovsk, Kirgizstan, Korea, Krasnoyarsk, Kriti, Krym, Kuril Is., KwaZulu-Natal, Labrador, Laccadive Is., Laos, Lebanon-Syria, Leeward Is., Lesotho, Lesser Sunda Is., Liberia, Libya, Louisiana, Madagascar, Madeira, Magadan, Maine, Malawi, Malaya, Mali, Manchuria, Manitoba, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Mongolia, Montana, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nansei-shoto, Nebraska, Nepal, Netherlands, Nevada, New Brunswick, New Caledonia, New Guinea, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New South Wales, New York, New Zealand North, New Zealand South, Newfoundland, Nicaragua, Nicobar Is., Niger, Nigeria, Norfolk Is., North Carolina, North Caucasus, North Dakota, North European Russi, Northern Provinces, Northern Territory, Northwest European R, Northwest Territorie, Norway, Nova Scotia, Ogasawara-shoto, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oman, Ontario, Oregon, Pakistan, Palestine, Panamá, Paraguay, Pennsylvania, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Primorye, Prince Edward I., Puerto Rico, Qinghai, Queensland, Québec, Rhode I., Romania, Rwanda, Réunion, Sakhalin, Sardegna, Saskatchewan, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sicilia, Sierra Leone, Society Is., Socotra, Solomon Is., Somalia, South Australia, South Carolina, South Dakota, South European Russi, Spain, Sri Lanka, St.Helena, Sudan, Sulawesi, Sumatera, Suriname, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tadzhikistan, Taiwan, Tanzania, Tasmania, Tennessee, Texas, Thailand, Tibet, Togo, Transcaucasus, Trinidad-Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkey-in-Europe, Turkmenistan, Tuva, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Utah, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Vermont, Victoria, Vietnam, Virginia, Washington, West Himalaya, West Siberia, West Virginia, Western Australia, Windward Is., Wisconsin, Wyoming, Xinjiang, Yakutskiya, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Yukon, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

Introduced into:

Falkland Is., Fiji, Hawaii, Tonga, Wallis-Futuna Is.

Persicaria Mill. appears in other Kew resources:

Date Reference Identified As Barcode Type Status
Rico, L. [1760], Armenia K000297292

First published in Gard. Dict. Abr. ed. 4: s.p. (1754)

Accepted by

  • Schuster, T.M., Reveal, J.L., Bayly, M.J. & Kron, K.A. (2015). An updated molecular phylogeny of Polygonoideae (Polygonaceae): relationships of Oxygonum, Pteroxygonum, and Rumex, and a new circumscription of Koenigia Taxon 64: 1188-1208.


Flora Zambesiaca

  • Kew Bull. 45: 621–636 (1990).
  • K.L. Wilson in Kew Bull. 45: 621–636 (1990).
  • Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 98: 330–338 (1988).
  • Ronse Decraene & Akeroyd in Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 98: 330–338 (1988).
  • Gard. Dict. abr. ed. 4, 1 (1754).
  • Gard. Dict. abr. ed. 4, 1 (1754).

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca

Herbarium Catalogue Specimens
'The Herbarium Catalogue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet [accessed on Day Month Year]'. Please enter the date on which you consulted the system.

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 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.

Plants and People Africa
Common Names from Plants and People Africa
© Plants and People Africa