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FRANGULA SPP. AND RHAMNUS SPP.


In attempting to get the correct botanical names for the various buckthorn species, this is what I found out:

Depending on what expert you listen to, either the genus name Frangula is a synonym for the accepted genus name Rhamnus or the genus name Rhamnus is a synonym for the accepted genus name Frangula.

The resource that I depend on is The Plant List, which I have been told by folks who seem to know, is THE bible for modern, accepted names and synonyms, so the following list is based on that resource. It is at: THE PLANT LIST. According to The Plant List, it's a bit more complicated and only SOME of the Rhamnus names are synonyms for corresponding Frangula names (and none of the Frangula names are synonyms for Rhamnus names).

The following table is NOT limited to species that have buckthorn in their name but rather includes all Frangula and Rhamnus species that occur in my wood name databse (available at WOOD NAME DATABASE


A = an accepted name
U = an unresolved name
S = a synonym (followed by what it is a synonym of)
? = not in the Plant List database

NAME STATUS SYNONYM OF
Frangula alnus A
Frangula atlantica S Frangula alnus
Frangula betulifolia A
Frangula californica A
Frangula dodonei S Frangula alnus
Frangula frangula
(that's not a typo)
S Frangula alnus
Frangula microphylla A
Frangula mucronata A
Frangula nigra S Frangula alnus
Frangula pentapetala S Frangula alnus
Frangula purshiana A
Frangula rubra ?
Frangula sphaerosperma A
Frangula vulgaris A Frangula alnus
Rhamnus alaternus A
Rhamnus alnifolia A
Rhamnus alpina A
Rhamnus arguta A
Rhamnus betulifolia S Frangula betulifolia
Rhamnus blumeri A
Rhamnus californica S Frangula californica
Rhamnus capreifolia S Frangula capreifolia
Rhamnus caroliniana A
Rhamnus cathartica A
Rhamnus coronula S Scutia buxifolia
Rhamnus crocea A
Rhamnus davurica A
Rhamnus frangula S Frangula alnus
Rhamnus ilicifolia A
Rhamnus japonica A
Rhamnus lanceolata A
Rhamnus lycioides A
Rhamnus microphylla S Frangula microphylla
Rhamnus mucronata S Frangula mucronata
Rhamnus palaestina U
Rhamnus pirifolia A
Rhamnus pringlei A
Rhamnus prinoides A
Rhamnus pumila A
Rhamnus purshiana S Frangula purshiana
Rhamnus rubra ?
Rhamnus sanguino S Frangula alnus
Rhamnus saxatilis A
Rhamnus serrata A
Rhamnus smithii A
Rhamnus sphaerosperma S Frangula sphaerosperma
Rhamnus tomentella S Frangula californica