Warszewiczia coccinea


Warszewiczia coccinea
Warszewiczia coccinea
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Rubiaceae
Subfamily: Cinchonoideae
Tribe: Rondeletieae
Genus: Warszewiczia
Species: W. coccinea
Binomial name
Warszewiczia coccinea
(Vahl) Klotzsch, 1853

Warszewiczia coccinea (or Chaconia, Wild Poinsettia and Pride of Trinidad and Tobago) is a species of flowering plant in the Rubiaceae family. It is the national flower of Trinidad and Tobago because it blooms on 31 August, which coincides with the day that Trinidad and Tobago became independent from Great Britain. It was named Chaconia after Trinidad's last colonial Spanish Governor Don Jose Maria Chacon, who is credited with a vast upgrading of the island and its capital Port of Spain.

This small, evergreen ornamental tree is remarkable for its inflorescence with bright red bracts and inconspicuous yellow petals.

The anise-odored roots are said to exhibit aphrodisiac properties.

A cultivar, the Double Chaconia, which has a double row of bracts, is the more widely cultivated form. This plant originates from cuttings taken from a wild plant found growing along a roadside. Since propagation from seed has not yet been successful, all Double Chaconias have been propagated by cuttings from this individual.

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