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Rivina humilis


Rivina humilis L.

Family Name: Phytolaccaceae
Common Name: Pigeon berry, Blood berry


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
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Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Growth Form Herbaceous Plant


Native Distribution Tropical America; naturalized in many countries in the old world tropics as well as in countries such as China and Japan.
Native Habitat Terrestrial
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical
Local Conservation Status Non-native (Spontaneous (Naturalised))

Description and Ethnobotany

Growth Form Herb to 1m tall
Foliage Leaves light - dark green, to 12cm long by 4cm wide, glabrous or with fine hairs especially along veins. 
Flowers Inflorescence to 15cm in length; flowers cream to white, or with a pale pink tinge; sepals to 0.3cm in length. 
Fruit Fruit a subglobose berry to 0.4cm in diameter, orange, bright red or purplish red. 
Ethnobotanical Uses Medicinal: In Jamaica, the plant is used in the treatment of colds and diarrhoea
Others: Some of the Native American tribes purportedly extracted a red dye from the ripe berries.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Fruits
Landscape Uses Small Gardens, Interiorscape/ Indoor Plant, Container Planting
Thematic Landscaping Bird & Wildlife Garden
Usage Hazard - Cons Toxic Upon Ingestion
Usage Hazard - Cons Remarks Fruits are toxic to humans 

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Fauna Pollination Dispersal Associated Fauna Bird Attracting (Fruits)
Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna) (Insects (Bee), Insects (Ant, Beetle, Fly, Thrip, Wasp))
Seed or Spore Dispersal Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Full Sun, Semi-Shade
Water Preference Moderate Water
Rootzone Tolerance Moist Soils, Fertile Loamy Soils, Easy to Grow
Propagation Method Seed


Foliage Retention Evergreen
Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower Colour(s) Cream / Off-White, Pink, White
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence

Fruit, Seed and Spore

Mature Fruit Colour(s) Orange, Purple, Red

Image Repository



Master ID 31421
Species ID 5818
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: 20 August 2022.