From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Starr 080117-1693 Hypoestes phyllostachya.jpg
Polka dot plant
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Lamiales
Family: Acanthaceae
Subfamily: Acanthoideae
Tribe: Justicieae
Genus: Hypoestes
Sol. ex R.Br.
Over 100 species

Amphiestes S.Moore
Periestes Baill.

Hypoestes is a flowering plant genus of about 150 species. They are widely distributed throughout the tropical and subtropical lands around the Indian Ocean, and some adjacent regions.

It belongs to the subfamily Acanthoideae of the acanthus family, Acanthaceae. Therein, it is classified in the subtribe Justiciinae of tribe Ruellieae, making it a relative of such American genera as the mosaic plants (Fittonia), water-willows (Justicia) and wrightworts (Carlowrightia).

Hypoestes comes from the Greek 'hypo' meaning under, and 'estia' meaning house. It refers to the way the flowers are hidden by the fused bracts.[1]

Many of these herbaceous to small shrubby plants of the undergrowth have boldly patterned leaves, typically featuring red colors. Some are grown as ornamental plants or pot plants. Most well-known among these are H. phyllostachya of Madagascar and its cultivars, commonly called polka dot plant.


Hypoestes species accepted by the Plants of the World Online as of June 2021:[2]

Flowering stalks of Hypoestes aristata


  1. ^ G. Miller, Anthony; Morris, Miranda (1988). Plants of Dhofar. Oman: The sultanate of Oman. p. 12. ISBN 071570808-2.
  2. ^ "Hypoestes". Plants of the World Online. Royal Botanic Gardens Kews. 2021. Retrieved 11 June 2021.

External links[edit]

Media related to Hypoestes at Wikimedia Commons