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Gardenia thunbergia (white gardenia)

The large, showy, creamy-white flowers of the white gardenia have an overpowering scent, which is particularly noticeable at night and typical of moth-pollinated plants.
White gardenia flower

<em>Gardenia thunbergia</em>

Species information

Scientific name: 

Gardenia thunbergia Thunb.

Common name: 

white gardenia, buffelsbal

Conservation status: 

Least Concern (LC) according to Red List of South African Plants 2009, following the IUCN Red List criteria.

Habitat: 

Evergreen forest and forest margins.

Key Uses: 

Ornamental, medicinal, as a raw material.

Known hazards: 

None known.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Asteranae
Order: 
Gentianales
Family: 
Rubiaceae
Genus: Gardenia

About this species

There are approximately 200 species of Gardenia, named after a Scottish doctor and keen amateur botanist, Dr Alexander Garden (1730-1791). Gardenia thunbergia, one of only six species from South Africa, commemorates the Swedish physician and botanist, Carl Peter Thunberg (1743-1828), who spent many years studying the botany of the Cape, eventually producing his enormous Flora of the Cape.

Synonym: 

There are a number of synonyms for this species. View the World Checklist for details.

Genus: 
Gardenia

main info

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Kew offers a variety of specialist training courses in horticulture, conservation and plant science.

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