The botany of Cinchona has a complex history, in part because of extensive hybridisation, and in part because insufficient good quality specimens have been collected in the native area of the genus, the Andes. Hybridisation is a particular problem in the plantations of India, where different species were often planted close together. Over 330 botanical names have been applied to Cinchona, but the most recent revision (Andersson & Kawasaki 1998) divides the genus into 23 species and 8 hybrids.

Botanical name Synonyms (only those represented in Kew specimens)
Cinchona calisaya Wedd. Cinchona amygdalifolia Wedd.
Cinchona australis Wedd.
Cinchona calisaya var. boliviana Wedd.
Cinchona calisaya var. josephiana Wedd.
Cinchona calisaya var. ledgeriana Howard
Cinchona calisaya var. oblongifolia Wedd.
Cinchona carabayensis Wedd.
Cinchona hasskarliana Miq.
Cinchona ledgeriana (Howard) Bern. Moens ex Trimen
Cinchona officinalis auct. mult.
Cinchona pahudiana Howard
Cinchona peruviana Howard
Distribution: Southern Peru, Bolivia. Widely cultivated, in India, Java, Jamaica.
Cinchona glandulifera Ruiz. & Pav.
Distribution: Rare, central Peru.
Cinchona hirsuta Ruiz. & Pav. Cinchona pubescens var. hirsuta Ruiz & Pav.
Cinchona calisaya var. rugosa Miq.
Distribution: Rare, in Peru.
Cinchona lancifolia Mutis Cinchona angustifolia Ruiz
Cinchona condaminea var. lancifolia (Mutis) Wedd.
Cinchona lancifolia var. angustifolia (Ruiz)DC.
Cinchona lancifolia var. discolor H. Karst.
Distribution: Venezuela, Colombia, to central Ecuador. Cultivated in Java.
Cinchona lucumifolia Pav. ex Lindl. Cinchona condaminea var. lucumaefolia (Lindl.) Wedd.
Distribution: Southern Ecuador.
Cinchona macrocalyx Pav. ex DC. Cinchona bonplandiana Klotzsch
Cinchona coccinea Pav.
Cinchona erythrantha Pav.
Cinchona heterophylla Pav.
Cinchona pubescens var. heterophylla DC.
Cinchona violacea Pav.
Distribution: Central Ecudaor to northern Peru. Cultivated in the Nilgiris, India.
Cinchona micrantha Ruiz. & Pav. Cinchona parviflora Poir.
Cinchona micrantha var. rotundifolia Wedd.
Cinchona peruviana var. micrantha (Ruiz & Pav.) Howard
Distribution: Peru.
Cinchona mutisii Lamb. Cinchona microphylla Pav.
Distribution: Southern Ecuador.
Cinchona nitida Ruiz. & Pav. Cinchona lancifolia var. nitida (Ruiz & Pav.) Roem. & Schult.
Cinchona peruviana var. nitida (Ruiz & Pav.) Howard
Distribution: Department of Hu√°nuco, Peru.
Cinchona parabolica Pav. Cinchona mutisii var. crispa Wedd.
Distribution: Southern Ecuador to northern Peru.
Cinchona officinalis L. Cinchona condaminea Humb. & Bonpl.
Cinchona obtusifolia Pav.
Cinchona uritusinga Pav.
Cinchona crispa Tafalla
Distribution: Southern Ecuador. Cultivated experimentally in India, Java, Jamaica.
Cinchona pitayensis (Wedd.) Wedd. Cinchona condaminea var. pitayensis Wedd.
Cinchona corymbosa H. Karst.
Distribution: Southern Colombia to central Ecuador. Cultivated in the Nilgiris, India.
Cinchona pubescens Vahl Cinchona colorata Laubert
Cinchona cordifolia Mutis
Cinchona cordifolia var. macrocarpa Wedd.
Cinchona decurrentifolia Pav.
Cinchona lutea Pav.
Cinchona ovata Ruiz & Pav.
Cinchona pelletieriana Wedd.
Cinchona platyphylla Wedd.
Cinchona purpurea Ruiz & Pav.
Cinchona rotundifolia Pav.
Cinchona succirubra Pav.
Distribution: widespread, from central America to Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. Widely cultivated, especiallysuccirubra strain.
Cinchona scrobiculata Humb. & Bonpl. Cinchona umbellulifera Pav.
Distribution: Rare, northern Peru.
Cinchona villosa Pav. Cinchona humboldtiana Lamb.
Distribution: Rare, southern Ecuador and northern Peru.
Cinchona calisaya √- pubescens
Not represented in Kew collection
Cinchona antioquiae L. Andersson
Cinchona asperifolia Wedd.
Cinchona barbacoensis H. Karst
Cinchona capuli L.
Cinchona fruticosa L. Andersson
Cinchona krauseana L. Andersson
Cinchona pyrifolia L. Andersson
Cinchona rugosa Pav.
Cinchona barbacoensis √- pubescens
Cinchona lancifolia √- pubescens
Cinchona lucumifolia √- pubescens
Cinchona macrocalyx √- pubescens
Cinchona macrocalyx √- rugosa
Cinchona micrantha √- pubescens
em>Cinchona officinalis √- pubescens

Further reading

  1. Andersson, L., and M. L. Kawasaki. 1998. A revision of the genus Cinchona (Rubiaceae-Cinchoneae).†Memoirs of the New York Botanical Garden†80: 1-75.
  2. Howard, J. E. 1862.†Illustrations of the Nueva quinologia of Pavon. London: L. Reeve.
  3. Weddell, H. A. 1849.†Histoire naturelle des Quinquinas ou monographie du genre quinquina. Paris: Victor Masson, 108pp.