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Acokanthera oblongifolia - poison arrow plant - from-DC1.jpg
Poison arrow plant, A. oblongifolia
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Genus: Acokanthera

Acokanthera laevigata
Acokanthera oblongifolia
Acokanthera oppositifolia
Acokanthera rotundata
Acokanthera schimperi

  • Toxicophlaea Harv.

Acokanthera is a genus of flowering plants in the family Apocynaceae. It comprises 5 species and is generally restricted to Africa, although Acokanthera schimperi also occurs in Yemen. Its sap contains the deadly cardiotoxic glycoside ouabain. The sap is among the most commonly used in arrow poisons,[2][3] including those used for poaching elephant.[4]

Acokanthera schimperi (A.DC.) Schweinf. (synonymous with A. abyssinica)


  1. ^ "World Checklist of Selected Plant Families". Retrieved May 22, 2014. 
  2. ^ Gould, George M. (1905). Dictionary of New Medical Terms. London: Bailliere Tindall & Cox. p. 36. 
  3. ^ Schmelzer, G.H. & Gurib-Fakim, A. (Editors), 2008. Plant Resources of Tropical Africa 11(1). Medicinal plants 1. PROTA Foundation, Wageningen, Netherlands / Backhuys Publishers, Leiden, Netherlands / CTA, Wageningen, Netherlands. 791 pp.
  4. ^ Kinloch, Bruce (1988). The Shamba Raiders. Hampshire: Ashford. p. 21. ISBN 1852530359.