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Genus: Centella

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Asterids > Euasterid II > Order: Apiales > Family: Araliaceae

Fifty species, all native to southern Africa but with some species occurring as far north as Malawi and one species, Centella asiatica, also occurring in Asia. Centella used to be in the family Apiaceae but has been transferred to the Araliaceae on the basis of genetic evidence (Plunkett, Soltis & Soltis 1997).

Species native to southern Africa

List from Plants of southern Africa - an online checklist (SANBI), Flora of Zimbabwe and Flora of Mozambique.

Centella affinis

Centella annua

Centella asiatica

See Flora of Zimbabwe.

Centella brachycarpa

Centella caespitosa

Centella calcaria

Centella calliodus

Centella capensis

Centella cochlearia

Centella comptonii

Centella coriacea

Centella cryptocarpa

Centella debilis

Centella dentata

Centella didymocarpa

Centella difformis

Centella dolichocarpa

Centella eriantha

Centella flexuosa

Centella fourcadei

Centella fusca

Centella glabrata

Centella glauca

Centella graminifolia

Centella gymnocarpa

Centella laevis

Centella lanata

Centella lasiophylla

Centella linifolia

Centella longifolia

Centella macrocarpa

Centella macrodus

Centella montana

Centella obtriangularis

Recorded from Zimbabwe and Mozambique. See Flora of Zimbabwe.

Centella pilosa

Centella pottebergensis

Centella recticarpa

Centella restioides

Centella rupestris

Centella scabra

Centella sessilis

Centella stenophylla

Centella stipitata

Centella ternata

Centella thesioides

Centella tridentata

Centella triloba

Centella umbellata

Centella villosa

Centella virgata

Species naturalised in southern Africa

List from Plants of Southern Africa - an Online Checklist (SANBI).

Centella asiatica (Marsh Pennywort)

Varkoortjies, Waternavel [Afrikaans]; bolila-ba-linku [South Sotho]; icudwane [Zulu]

See KwaZulu-Natal Wildflowers by Elsa Pooley p. 540.


  • Adamson, R.S. 1951. A revision of the sub-genus Solandra of Centella. Journal of South African Botany 17: 1-41.

  • Burtt, B.L. 1991. Umbelliferae of southern Africa: an introduction and annotated checklist. Edinburgh Journal of Botany 48: 133-282.

  • Plunkett, G.M., Soltis, D.E. & Soltis, P.S. 1997. Clarification of the relationship between Apiaceae and Araliaceae based on MATK and RBCL sequence data. American Journal of Botany 84: 565-580.

  • Schubert, M.T.R. & van Wyk, B.-E. 1997. A revision of Centella series Capenses (Apiaceae). Nordic Journal of Botany 17,3: 301-314.


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