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Clusia fluminensis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Clusiaceae
Subfamily: Clusioideae
Tribe: Clusieae
Genus: Clusia

Around 145, see text


Arrudea Cambess.
Androstylium Miq.
Cochlanthera Choisy
Decaphalangium Melch.
Havetia Kunth
Havetiopsis Planch. & Triana
Oedematopus Planch. & Triana
Oxystemon Planch. & Triana
Pilosperma Planch. & Triana
Quapoya Aubl.
Renggeria Meisn.
Rengifa Poepp. & Endl.

Clusia grandiflora - MHNT

Clusia is the type genus of the family Clusiaceae. Comprising 300-400 species, it is native to tropical America. The genus Clusia is named in honor of the botanist Carolus Clusius.


Its species are shrubs, vines and small to medium-size trees up to 20 m tall, with evergreen foliage. Some species start life as epiphytes, then develop long roots that descend to the ground and eventually strangle and kill the host tree in a manner similar to strangler figs.

The leaves are opposite, 5–20 cm long and 2–10 cm broad, with a leathery texture and an entire margin. The flowers are white, cream, yellow, pink, red, blackish or green with 4-9 petals. The fruit is a leathery valvate capsule which splits open to release several red or orange, fleshy-coated seeds.

Clusia plants provide excellent nesting sites for some insects. For instance, Clusia grandiflora, a common species in Guianese forests, is an attractive place for Polistes pacificus wasps to build their paper nests because arboreal ants, which often prey on these wasps, do not normally reside in this species of tree.[1]

Selected species[edit]



  1. ^ Corbara, Bruno et al. (2009). "Diversity and nest site selection of social wasps along Guianese forest edges: assessing the influence of arboreal ants". C.r. Biologies 332:470-479. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Clusia at Wikimedia Commons