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biodiversity explorer

the web of life in southern Africa

Order: Asterales

Life > eukaryotes > Archaeoplastida > Chloroplastida > Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants) > Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants) > Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Asterids > Euasterid II

Eleven families, of which four occur in southern Africa. Worldwide, there are about 1743 genera and 26870 species, with 224 genera and 2689 species native to southern Africa, 59 genera and 157 species naturalised and an additional 56 genera 178 species cultivated in the region.

Families encountered in southern Africa

Asteraceae - Compositae (daisy family)

There are 1528 genera and 22750 species worldwide (cosmopolitan), of which 201 genera and 2269 species are native to southern Africa. Another 59 genera and 157 species have become naturalised in the region, and 42 genera and 139 species are cultivated. 

Arctotheca callendula

Campanulaceae (bellflower family)

There are 79 genera and about 2300 species (cosmopolitan, especially Mediterranean region and southern Africa), of which 20 genera and 410 species are native to southern Africa. An additional 14 genera and 38 species are cultivated in the region.

Wahlenbergia ?androsacea


Sixteen genera and about 430 species (mainly Australia, also New Zealand, Antarctic, South America, tropical Asia and Africa), with one genus (Scaevola) and two species native to southern Africa and an additional species cultivated in the region.

Scaevola plumieri


There are five genera and about 40-50 species in this cosmopolitan family, with two genera and eight species occurring in southern Africa.

Nymphoides indica

Families not encountered in southern Africa

Alseuosmiaceae, Argophyllaceae, Calyceraceae, Pentaphragmataceae, Phellinaceae, Rousseaceae, Stylidiaceae