Non-existent plant? genus/species NOT found on inat/internet


I am writing from the Museum of Natural History of Curacao. We are looking for the taxonomic status of a local species of plant. I cannot find any listing for it anywhere in any database, besides a local purported one. The genus(genii) is(are) also not on inaturalist.

Can anyone help us get the correct taxonomy? Thank you

The latest (local) listing is:
Matalea rubra
or Omphalophthlamus rubrus
Family Apocynaceae

iNaturalist largely follows the Kew Plants of the World naming for plants, which uses Ibatia rubra:

This species is on iNaturalist but only has a single, uncorroborated observation:

GBIF has 50+ records:


Welcome to the Forum!

Just wondering… That is a pretty curious looking fruit; is it edible?


While I don’t know about this one in particular, in family Apocynaceae, many plants are toxic. It might also be full of fluffy flying seeds and not juicy flesh.

From Wikipedia:
Many species of plants from the family Apocynaceae have some toxicity, with some being extremely poisonous if parts are ingested, or if they are not handled properly. Genera containing cardiac glycosidesCerbera , Nerium , Cascabela , Strophanthus, [9] Acokanthera ,[14] Apocynum, [15] Thevetia, [16] etc.—have therapeutic ranges, but are often associated with accidental poisonings, in many cases lethal (see below). Alkaloid-producing species like Rauvolfia serpentina, Catharanthus roseus, and Tabernanthe iboga are likewise the source of compounds with therapeutic ranges, but which have significant associated toxicities if not taken in appropriate doses and in controlled fashion.

There are limited dietary uses of plants from this family. The flower of Fernaldia pandurata (common name: loroco ) is edible.[36] Carissa (Natal plum) produces an edible fruit, but all other parts of the plant are poisonous.[37] The genus Apocynum was reportedly used as a source of fiber by Native Americans.[38] The aromatic fruit juice from Saba comorensis (syn. Landolphia comorensis , the Bungo or Mbungo fruit) is used as a drink.[39]


I see that Matelea rubra is included on the iNat page for Ibatia rubra but as an inactive scientific name (and synonym). Should that other name (O. rubrus) be added to the species account also, for future reference?


Synonym has been added.

@patrickas thank you for joining us on the forum! Just for future reference, questions like this about specific iNaturalist taxonomy are best handled in iNaturalist instead of on the forum. Pick a higher taxon, such as the genus or family, flag it for curation, and leave a comment about what is missing, and a curator will eventually address the problem.

By the way, the genus Matelea is in iNaturalist, it is just spelled differently than what you had.

This question appears to have been resolved, so I’m going to go ahead and close this topic.