Pyrostegia venusta (Ker Gawl.) Miers

First published in Proc. Roy. Hort. Soc. London 3: 188 (1863)
This species is accepted
The native range of this species is Mexico to S. Tropical America. It is a liana and grows primarily in the wet tropical biome. It is used as a medicine, has environmental uses and for food.


Bignoniaceae, Sally Bidgood, Bernard Verdcourt, Kaj Vollesen. Cobaeaceae, Bernard Verdcourt. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2006

Morphology General Habit
Extensive woody climber reaching tops of tall trees or covering houses.
Morphology Leaves
Leaves with 2 leaflets, the terminal replaced by a tendril.
Morphology Leaves Leaflets
Leaflets ovate to elliptic, 3.5–8 × 2.5–6 cm, acute to acuminate at the apex.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers in terminal or axillary subumbelliform panicles.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Calyx
Calyx campanulate (3–)4–7 mm long with very short teeth ± 0.5 mm long.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers Corolla
Corolla brilliant waxy orange, yellow or red, tubular-funnel-shaped, (4–)4.5–8.5 cm long, 0.7–1.2 cm wide at the throat, lobes oblong, 1–2.5 × 0.4–0.7 cm.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruits flat, linear, 16–33 × 1.2–1.6 cm.
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds ± 0.9 × 1 cm, slightly bilobed with brownish hyaline wings.
Fig. 2.3–2.6, p. 15.
Native of Brazil; this is one of the most widely planted showy climbers in the tropics and must be in almost every sizeable garden in E Africa; being so well known there are not many collections.

Bernal, R., G. Galeano, A. Rodríguez, H. Sarmiento y M. Gutiérrez. 2017. Nombres Comunes de las Plantas de Colombia.

boliviana, cayena, jazmín de fuego, llamarada, lluvia de coral, lluvia de oro, siete de bastos, tango

Extinction risk predictions for the world's flowering plants to support their conservation (2024). Bachman, S.P., Brown, M.J.M., Leão, T.C.C., Lughadha, E.N., Walker, B.E.

Predicted extinction risk: not threatened. Confidence: confident

Bernal, R., Gradstein, S.R. & Celis, M. (eds.). 2015. Catálogo de plantas y líquenes de Colombia. Instituto de Ciencias Naturales, Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Bogotá.

Nativa y cultivada en Colombia; Alt. 100 - 1900 m.; Andes, Guayana y Serranía de La Macarena, Orinoquia.
Morphology General Habit
No Evaluada

Biogeografic region: Andean, Guiana Shield, Orinoquia. Elevation range: 100–1900 m a.s.l. Cultivated in Colombia. Native to Colombia. Colombian departments: Antioquia, Bogotá DC, Caquetá, Cauca, Meta, Valle del Cauca, Vichada.
Habitat according IUCN Habitats Classification: forest and woodland, shrubland, native grassland, wetlands (inland), artificial - terrestrial.

Kew Species Profiles

General Description
Flame vine is a rampant climber that carries cascades of bright orange tubular flowers. Although a dazzling spectacle when in full flower, in some parts of the world it has become naturalised and a weed.

Pyrostegia venusta is a liana (a vigorous, woody climber) that makes a beautiful ornamental plant with cascades of orange flowers. It is commonly grown in tropical and subtropical areas, as well as in mild Mediterranean climates. The plants form dense masses, growing up trees, on walls or over rocks, and are covered with flowers in the cool, dry season.

The plant from which the painting of P. venusta in Curtis's Botanical Magazine was illustrated was collected in Brazil in 1815 by Admiral Sir John Beresford (Second Sea Lord and Conservative politician). It was brought to the editor of Curtis's Botanical Magazine by William Smith, who looked after Lord Liverpool's garden at Combe Wood in Surrey. Lord Liverpool became Prime Minister in 1812 after the assassination of Spencer Perceval and died at Combe Wood in 1828.

Species Profile
Geography and distribution

This species is native to Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia and Paraguay. According to some records, it may occur naturally as far north as Mexico. It is also commonly cultivated throughout the tropics and other frost-free regions of the world, where it can become naturalised and is sometimes considered invasive.


Pyrostegia venusta climbs up to 6 m or more. The leaves have paired leaflets (5.0-7.5 cm), and a long, central 3-branched, twisting tendril. The crowded clusters of flowers are formed in the leaf axils on the tips of shoots. The orange, yellow or red flowers are 4-8 cm long, tubular, with narrow recurved lobes. Each flower has an exerted style and two long exerted and two shorter stamens. The capsule is narrowly cylindrical and filled with winged seeds. After the petals fall off, they hang for a day or so by the style before dropping. In the wild, P. venusta is pollinated by hummingbirds.


In Brazil, the leaves of Pyrostegia venusta are used in traditional medicine as a tonic and for treating diarrhoea. However, Pyrostegia venusta is more widely known as an ornamental climber that makes a dazzling spectacle when in full flower. It flowers throughout the year in favourable locations (with a peak in June to September in its native range). In some parts of the world, such as in Queensland (Australia), south-eastern USA and on some Pacific islands, it has become naturalised and is considered a weed, smothering native vegetation. There is a risk that it could become invasive in other countries where it has been introduced.

This species at Kew

Flame vine is found in the Princess of Wales Conservatory, flowering mainly in winter.

Pressed and dried specimens of Pyrostegia venusta are held in Kew's Herbarium, where they are available to researchers from around the world, by appointment. The details of some of these, including images, can be seen online in the Herbarium Catalogue.

Argentina, Brazil
Rocky places, forests in seasonally dry areas, scrub.
Not evaluated according to IUCN Red List criteria.

None known.



Use Environmental
Environmental uses.
Use Food
Used for food.
Use Materials
Used as material.
Use Medicines
Medical uses.

Ornamental, traditional medicine.

Common Names

Flame vine


  • Angiosperm Extinction Risk Predictions v1

    • Angiosperm Threat Predictions
  • Catálogo de Plantas y Líquenes de Colombia

  • Colombian resources for Plants made Accessible

    • ColPlantA 2021. Published on the Internet at
  • Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • Flora of Tropical East Africa
  • Herbarium Catalogue Specimens

    • Digital Image © Board of Trustees, RBG Kew
  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2024. Published on the Internet at and
    • © Copyright 2023 World Checklist of Vascular Plants.
  • Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2024. Published on the Internet at and
    • © Copyright 2023 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants.
  • Kew Science Photographs

    • Copyright applied to individual images
  • Kew Species Profiles

    • Kew Species Profiles
  • Universidad Nacional de Colombia

    • ColPlantA database
  • Useful Plants and Fungi of Colombia