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Tabernaemontana divaricata (dwarf)

Family Name: Apocynaceae
Full Sun: 6-8h Semi-Shade Moderate Water Ornamental Flowers Woody


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Infraspecific Epithet
Name Status (botanical)

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Division Angiosperms (Flowering Seed Plants) (Dicotyledon)
Plant Growth Form Shrub (Woody)
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Plant Shape Rounded


Native Habitat Terrestrial
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form A dwarf bushy shrub with  produces milky sap when injured.
Foliage Leaves green, glossy, simple, lanceolate shaped, apex acuminate, base attenuate.
Flowers White, 5 petals arranged like pinwheels in counterclockwise direction, has white corolla tube. 
Etymology Genus Tabernaemontana is named after a German herbalist, Jakob Theodor van Bergzaben (1520 - 1590). Specific epithet divaricata means wide-spreading, divaricate.
Ethnobotanical Uses Medicinal ( This plant is believed to have antimicrobial action against infectious diseases like syphilis and leprosy as well as anti-parasitic action against worms, diarrhoea and malaria. Its root is reportedly being used in folk medicine for analgesic properties.)

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers
Plant & Rootzone Preference - Tolerance Moist Soils, Well-Drained Soils
Landscape Uses General, Flowerbed / Border, Hedge / Screening, Parks & Gardens, Container Planting

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna) (Insects (Butterfly, Moth))

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Moderate Water
Plant Growth Rate Moderate


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green
Mature Foliage Texture(s) Glossy / Shiny
Prominent Young Flush Colour(s) Green
Foliar Type Simple / Unifoliate
Foliar Arrangement Along Stem Opposite
Foliar Shape(s) Non-Palm Foliage (Lanceolate)
Foliar Venation Pinnate / Net
Foliar Margin Entire
Foliar Apex - Tip Acuminate
Foliar Base Attenuate

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower Colour(s) White
Flower Texture(s) Smooth, Waxy
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence
Flower Location Terminal
Inflorescence Type Cyme
Flowering Period Free-Flowering

Image Repository



Master ID 30464
Species ID 4773
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 14 October 2021.