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Gagea whole plant.jpg
Gagea lutea
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Order: Liliales
Family: Liliaceae
Subfamily: Lilioideae
Tribe: Lilieae
Genus: Gagea
  • Upoxis Adans.
  • Rhabdocrinum Rchb.
  • Ornithoxanthum Link
  • Lloydia Salisb. ex Rchb. 1830 not Delile 1844 (Poaceae)
  • Nectarobothrium Ledeb.
  • Cronyxium Raf.
  • Hemierium Raf.
  • Hornungia Bernh. [1840], illegitimate homonym not Rchb. [1837] (Brassicaceae)
  • Reggeria Raf.
  • Bulbillaria Zucc.
  • Plecostigma Turcz.
  • Boissiera Haens. ex Willk. [1846], illegitimate homonym not Hochst. ex Steud. [1840] (syn of Bromus in Poaceae) nor Hochst. ex Griseb. [1852] (Poaceae)
  • Solenarium Dulac
  • Szechenyia Kanitz
  • Giraldiella Dammer
Close-up of the flowers

Gagea is a large genus of spring flowers in the lily family.[2] It is found primarily in Eurasia with a few species extending into North Africa and North America.[1][3][4][5][6][7]

The genus is named after the English naturalist Sir Thomas Gage (1791-1820). They were originally described as species of Ornithogalum, which, together with the usual yellow colour of the flowers, explains the English name yellow star-of-Bethlehem for the common European species, Gagea lutea.[8][1]


As of January 2014, the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families recognizes over 200 species, including those previously assigned to Lloydia.[9]


  1. ^ a b c "Lloydia". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 2014-01-09.
  2. ^ Salisbury, Richard Anthony. 1806" Annals of Botany 2: 555
  3. ^ Zarrei, M.; Zarre, S.; Wilkin, P.; Rix, M. (2007). "Systematic revision of the genus Gagea Salisb. (Liliaceae) in Iran". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 154: 559–588. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8339.2007.00678.x.
  4. ^ Tison, J.M. (2009). An update of the genus Gagea Salisb. (Liliaceae) in the Iberian peninsula. Lagascalia 29: 7-22
  5. ^ Altervista Flora Italiana, genere Gagea
  6. ^ Flora of China Vol. 24 Page 117 顶冰花属 ding bing hua shu Gagea Salisbury, Ann. Bot. (Oxford). 2: 555. 1806.
  7. ^ Flora of China, Vol. 24 Page 121 洼瓣花属 wa ban hua shu Lloydia Reichenbach, Fl. Germ. Excurs. 102. 1830.
  8. ^ Tutin, T.G.; Heywood, V.H.; Burges, N.A.; Moore, D.M.; Valentine, D.H.; Walters, S.M. & Webb, D.A., eds. (1980). Flora Europaea. 5. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-20108-7. p. 25.
  9. ^ "Gagea". World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Retrieved 2014-01-09.


  • Peterson, Angela; Levichev, Igor G.; Peterson, Jens (February 2008). "Systematics of Gagea and Lloydia (Liliaceae) and infrageneric classification of Gagea based on molecular and morphological data". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 46 (2): 446–465. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2007.11.016. PMID 18180173.
  • Tison, Jean-Marc; Peterson, Angela; Harpke, Dörte; Peruzzi, Lorenzo (28 November 2012). "Reticulate evolution of the critical Mediterranean Gagea sect. Didymobulbos (Liliaceae) and its taxonomic implications". Plant Systematics and Evolution. 299 (2): 413–438. doi:10.1007/s00606-012-0731-4.

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