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Lantana camara (PROSEA)

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Plant Resources of South-East Asia
List of species

1, root system; 2, flowering and fruiting twig; 3, flower with bract; 4, flower in longitudinal section; 5, infructescence; 7, seed (Achmad Satiri Nurhaman)

Lantana camara L.

Protologue: Sp. pl. 2: 627 (1753).


  • Lantana aculeata L. (1753).

Vernacular names

  • Sage, wild sage (En)
  • Indonesia: kembang telek, tembelekan (Javanese), saliara (Sundanese)
  • Malaysia: bunga pagar, bunga tahi ayam, jebat harimau (Peninsular)
  • Philippines: koronitas, kantutay (Tagalog), baho-baho (Bisaya)
  • Thailand: kaam kung (Mae Hong Son), khee kae (Pranchin Buri), yeesun (Trang)
  • Vietnam: cây trâm ổi, cây bông ổi, cây tứ quí.


Native to tropical America, but introduced and naturalized throughout the tropics and subtropics.


In South-East Asia the leaves (and sometimes the wet, ground roots) are applied to cuts, ulcers, swellings and to treat rheumatism, a decoction of the leaves and flowers is used to treat constipation, as a febrifuge, diaphoretic and stimulant, and to relieve catarrh and bronchitis. A decoction of the roots is used to treat toothache, headache, inflammation, gonorrhoea and leucorrhoea. L. camara is used as an ornamental and in hedges.


  • An erect or subscandent much-branched shrub, up to 5 m tall, stems square or 3-angled, often bearing hooked prickles, highly aromatic.
  • Leaves opposite or rarely in whorls of 3, ovate to oblong-ovate, 5-8 cm × 3-5.5 cm, petiole 1.5-3 cm long.
  • Inflorescence flat or hemispherical subcapitate.
  • Flowers with corolla tube extending to 12 mm long during anthesis, often slightly curved, orange-yellow or orange to pink, white, or variegated, changing to red or scarlet.
  • Fruit a globose glossy drupe, deep blue when ripe.

L. camara occurs from sea-level to 1700 m altitude in relatively open and disturbed, not too moist habitats. It is mainly a weed of plantation crops and pastures. Due to the toxicity of leaves and seeds it is a serious threat to sheep and cattle.

Selected sources

  • [92] Backer, C.A., 1928-1934. Onkruidflora der Javasche suikerrietgronden. Handboek ten dienste van de suikerriet-cultuur en de rietsuiker-fabricage op Java [Weed flora of Javanese sugar-cane fields. Handbook for the cultivation of sugar-cane and manufacturing of cane-sugar in Java]. Vereeniging het Proefstation voor de Java-Suikerindustrie, Pasuruan, Indonesia. 4 volumes. 970 pp.
  • [97] Backer, C.A. & Bakhuizen van den Brink Jr, R.C., 1963-1968. Flora of Java. 3 volumes. Noordhoff, Groningen, the Netherlands. Vol. 1 (1963) 647 pp., Vol. 2 (1965) 641 pp., Vol. 3 (1968) 761 pp.
  • [129] Barre, J.T. et al., 1997. A bioactive triterpene from Lantana camara. Phytochemistry 45(2): 321-324.
  • [202] Burkill, I.H., 1966. A dictionary of the economic products of the Malay Peninsula. Revised reprint. 2 volumes. Ministry of Agriculture and Co-operatives, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Vol. 1 (A-H) pp. 1-1240. Vol. 2 (I-Z) pp. 1241-2444.
  • [332] de Padua, L.S., Lugod, G.C. & Pancho, J.V., 1977-1983. Handbook on Philippine medicinal plants. 4 volumes. Documentation and Information Section, Office of the Director of Research, University of the Philippines at Los Baños, the Philippines.
  • [350] Dharma, A.P., 1981. Indonesische geneeskrachtige planten [Indonesian medicinal plants]. De Driehoek, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. 168 pp.
  • [468] Ganguly, L.K., 1994. Fungitoxic effect of certain plant extracts against rice blast and brown spot pathogen. Environment and Ecology 12(3): 731-733.
  • [578] Herbert, J.M., Maffrand, J.P., Taoubi, K., Augereau, J.M., Fouraste, I. & Gleye, J., 1991. Verbascoside isolated from Lantana camara, an inhibitor of protein kinase C. Journal of Natural Products 54(6): 1595-1600.
  • [650] Inada, A., Nakanishi, T., Tokuda, H., Nishino, H., Iwashima, A. & Sharma, O.P., 1995. Inhibitory effects of lantadenes and related triterpenoids on Epstein-Barr virus activation. Planta Medica 61(6): 558-559.
  • [968] Moldencke, H.N., 1940. Verbenaceae. In: Pulle, A. (Editor): Flora of Suriname. Vol 4(2). Koninklijke Vereniging Koloniaal Instituut, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Mededeeling No 30. Afdeling Handelsmuseum No 11. pp. 257-321.
  • [979] Morton, J.F., 1981. Atlas of medicinal plants of Middle America. Bahamas to Yucatan. Charles C. Thomas, Springfield, Illinois, United States. 1420 pp.
  • [1035] Nguyen Van Duong, 1993. Medicinal plants of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. Mekong Printing, Santa Ana, California, United States. 528 pp.
  • [1065] Occhiuto, F., Circosta, C. & Costa de Pasquale, R., 1989. Studies on some medicinal plants of Senegal: effects on isolated guinea pig ileum. Journal of Ethnopharmacology 26(2): 205-210.
  • [1089] O'Neill, M.J. et al., 1998. Isolation of translactone-containing triterpenes with thrombin inhibitory activities from the leaves of Lantana camara. Journal of Natural Products 61(11): 1328-1331.
  • [1106] Pan, W.D., Li, Y.J., Mai, L.T., Ohtani, K., Kasai, R. & Tanaka, O., 1992. Studies on chemical constituents of the roots of Lantana camara. Yao Hsueh Hsueh Pao 27(7): 515-521. (in Chinese)
  • [1107] Pan, W.D., Li, Y.J., Mai, L.T., Ohtani, K.H., Kasai, R.T., Tanaka, O. & Yu, D.Q., 1993. Studies on triterpenoid constituents of the roots of Lantana camara. Yao Hsueh Hsueh Pao 28(1): 40-44. (in Chinese)
  • [1108] Pan, W.D., Mai, L.T., Li, Y.J., Xu, X.L. & Yu, D.Q., 1993. Studies on the chemical constituents of the leaves of Lantana camara. Yao Hsueh Hsueh Pao 28(1): 35-39. (in Chinese)
  • [1126] Perry, L.M., 1980. Medicinal plants of East and Southeast Asia. Attributed properties and uses. MIT Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States & London, United Kingdom. 620 pp.
  • [1128] Pételot, A., 1952-1954. Les plantes médicinales du Cambodge, du Laos et du Vietnam [The medicinal plants of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam]. 4 volumes. Centre National de Recherches Scientifiques et Techniques, Saigon, Vietnam.
  • [1178] Quisumbing, E., 1978. Medicinal plants of the Philippines. Katha Publishing Co., Quezon City, the Philippines. 1262 pp.
  • [1213] Rejesus, B.M. & Tantengco, G.B., 1986. Biological activity of flower extracts as insecticides. National Science and Technology Authority Technology Journal (Philippines) 11(1): 37-46.
  • [1321] Sharma, O.P., Dawra, R.K. & Pattabhi, V., 1991. Molecular structure, polymorphism, and toxicity of lantadene A, the pentacyclic triterpenoid from the hepatotoxic plant Lantana camara. Journal of Biochemistry and Toxicology 6(1): 57-63.
  • [1322] Sharma, O.P., Makkar, H.P. & Dawra, R.K., 1988. A review of the noxious plant Lantana camara. Toxicon 26(11): 975-987.
  • [1323] Sharma, O.P., Vaid, J., Pattabhi, V. & Bhutani, K.K., 1992. Biological action of lantadene C, a new hepatotoxicant from Lantana camara var. aculeata. Journal of Biochemistry and Toxicology 7(2): 73-79.
  • [1558] Weenen, H., Nkunya, M.H.H., Bray, D.H., Mwasumbi, L.B., Kinabo, L.S. & Kilimali, V.A.E.B., 1990. Antimalarial activity of Tanzanian medicinal plants. Planta Medica 56: 368-370.
  • [1561] Weidelt, H.J. (Editor), 1976. Manual of reforestation and erosion control for the Philippines. Schriftenreihe No 22. Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH, Eschborn, Germany. 569 pp.
  • [1572] Wijayakusuma, H.M.H., Wirian, S.W., Yaputra, T., Dalimartha, S. & Wibowo, B., 1992. Tanaman berkhasiat obat di Indonesia [Plants yielding medicine in Indonesia]. Vol. 1. Pustaka Kartini, Jakarta, Indonesia. 122 pp.

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