Macaranga is a large genus of Old World tropical trees of the family Euphorbiaceae and the only genus in the subtribe Macaranginae (tribe Acalypheae). Native to Africa, Australasia, Asia and various islands of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, the genus comprises over 300 different species.[4][5] It was first described as a genus in 1806, based on specimens collected on the Island of Mauritius.[1][3]

Macaranga peltata.jpg
Macaranga peltata
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Rosids
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Euphorbiaceae
Subfamily: Acalyphoideae
Tribe: Acalypheae
Subtribe: Macaranginae
Genus: Macaranga
Thouars 1806[1]
Type species
Macaranga mauritiana
Bojer ex Baill.[2][3]

Macaranga is noted for being recolonizers. Macaranga species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera species including Endoclita malabaricus. Macaranga species often form symbioses with ant (Formicidae) species (particularly Crematogaster ants of the subgenus Decacrema) because they have hollow stems that can serve as nesting space and occasionally provide nectar. The trees benefit because the ants attack herbivorous insects and either drive them away or feed on them.[6]



Plants of the World Online currently includes: [8]


  1. ^ a b Du Petit-Thouars (1806). Genera nova madagascariensia secundum methodum jussiaeanam disposita. Paris. 29pp
  2. ^ neotype, mistakenly called lectotype, designated by M. J. E. Coode, Taxon 25: 184 (1976). Cannot be lectotype because not described until 1859
  3. ^ a b Tropicos, genus Macaranga
  4. ^ a b Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  5. ^ Govaerts, R., Frodin, D.G. & Radcliffe-Smith, A. (2000). World Checklist and Bibliography of Euphorbiaceae (and Pandaceae) 1-4: 1-1622. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  6. ^ Federle, W.; Maschwitz, U.; Fiala, B. (1998). "The two-partner ant-plant system of Camponotus (Colobopsis) sp. 1 and Macaranga puncticulata (Euphorbiaceae): Natural history of the exceptional ant partner". Insectes Sociaux. 45 (1): 1–16. doi:10.1007/s000400050064. S2CID 26704950.
  7. ^
  8. ^ Plants of the World Online: Macaranga Thouars (retrieved 13 June 2020)