1. Scaevola taccada (Gaertner) Roxburgh, Hort. Bengal. 15. 1814.
草海桐 cao hai tong
Lobelia taccada Gaertner, Fruct. Sem. Pl. 1: 119. 1788; Scaevola frutescens Krause, nom. illeg. superfl.; S. koenigii Vahl; S. sericea Vahl.
Shrubs or small trees, to 7 m tall, erect or diffuse. Twigs 5-10 mm in diam., sometimes rooting, hollow, usually glabrous but axils with a tuft of dense white barbate trichomes. Leaves spirally arranged, mostly aggregated at apex of branches, sessile or shortly petiolate; leaf blade spatulate to obovate, 10-22 × 4-8 cm, slightly succulent, glabrous or abaxially sparsely villous, base cuneate, apex rounded, truncate, or emarginate. Cymes axillary; bracts and bracteoles small, with a tuft of barbate trichomes in axils. Pedicel with a joint at apex. Calyx glabrous; tube obovoid; lobes linear-lanceolate, ca. 2.5 mm. Corolla white to pale yellow or purple, ca. 2 cm; tube thinly tubular, posterior side divided to base, outside glabrous, inside densely white villous; limb patent; lobes lanceolate, thickened at center, each side with a wide membranous and induplicate wing above middle, margin sparsely ciliate. Anthers connivent into a tube with basal part of indusium, becoming free after anthesis; connective longer than cells, becoming lamellar at apex. Drupe white, ovoid-globose, 7-10 mm in diam., divided longitudinally by furrows into 2 parts each 4-ribbed, 2-locular; locules each with 1 seed. Fl. and fr. Apr-Dec. 2n = 16.
Open coastal sands or rocks; near sea level. Dongsha Qundao, SE Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Nansha Qundao, Taiwan, Xisha Qundao [India, Indonesia, S Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Vietnam; E Africa, tropical Australia, Indian Ocean islands, Madagascar, Pacific islands].
Scaevola taccada is naturalized in some coastal areas of tropical and subtropical America. It likely occurs in coastal Cambodia and the SE coast of Bangladesh, although these potential distributions need to be confirmed. For a discussion of the nomenclatural problems concerning the Indo-Pacific species S. taccada and the Indo-Atlantic species S. plumieri (Linnaeus) Vahl see P. S. Green (Taxon 40: 118-122. 1991), C. Jeffrey (Kew Bull. 34: 537-545. 1980), and R. K. Shannon et al. (Taxon 46: 801-802. 1997). The Vienna Code, Art. 33.3 Ex. 8, explains why the new combination as S. taccada was validly published by Roxburgh in 1814 due to reference to the published illustration by Rheede (Hort. Malab. 4: t. 59. 1683) which was also cited by Gaertner in his 1788 publication.