Primary tabs



Shrubs or trees. Branches with leaves crowded towards apices; nodes with low interpetiolar sheaths. Leaves petiolate, 18-105 cm long; multi-veined. Inflorescences terminal, a dichasial cyme, inflorescence branches yellow or orange; bracts and bracteoles scale-like. Flowers pedicellate, with 4 decussate calyx lobes and 8-10-merous corolla and androecium, actinomorphic; calyx divided to the base, coriaceous, campanulate, lobes elliptic to orbicular, convex, without dorsal keel but thickened dorsally, apex obtuse; corolla bud apex rounded; corolla fused for about 1/2-3/4 of length, coriaceous and fleshy, tubular, slightly funnel-shaped, or salver-shaped, 7-20 mm long; androecium actinomorphic; stamens inserted in middle of corolla tube, of equal length, filaments fused into a staminal tube, anthers linear, free, connective apex apiculate; pollen in monads (rarely tetrads; P. maguireorum); pistil with nectary disk around base, stigma capitate. Fruit a berry, with calyx persistent and corolla deciduous; seeds circular to elliptic, flattened, not winged, testa pattern reticulate, pitted.


Guianas present present, Neotropics present, Southern America: Bolivia (Bolivia present); Colombia (Colombia present); Costa Rica (Costa Rica present); Ecuador (Ecuador present); Panamá (Panamá present); Peru (Peru present); Venezuela (Venezuela present), all tropical countries of S America present
In the Neotropics 9 species, from Costa Rica and Panama and in all tropical countries of S America (Colombia, Venezuela, the Guianas, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and Brazil); in the Guianas 2 species.


Aubl. 1775 – In: Hist. Pl. Guiane: tab. 151


The genus name might be derived from the Latin word potare, which means to drink (Kuntze 1891; Struwe & Albert 1998), since infusions and decoctions from these plants are used for many diseases and ailments (Aublet, 1775; Struwe & Albert, 2004).