Gaultheria leucocarpa Blume

Gaultheria leucocarpa Blume




Gaultheria crenulata Kurz (for var. leucocarpa f. cumingiana), Gaultheria cumingiana Vidal (for var. leucocarpa f. cumingiana), Bros­saea leucocarpa (Blume) O. Kuntze.

Vernacular Names


General: wintergreen.


Gondopuro (Javanese), kering, cantigi bodas (Sundanese).


Logaway (Bagobo).


Chamayomdoi (Chi­ang Mai).


Ch[aa]u th[uj].


Petit the des pois.

Geographical Distributions

Gaultheria leucocarpa is commonly found from Burma (Myanmar), southern and south western China, through Malaysia, Sumatra, Java, to the Philippines.


Gaultheria leucocarpa is a slender shrub, that can grow up to 0.25-2(-3) m tall, climbing or somewhat decumbent. The branches are flex­uous and often pendulous. The branchlets are reddish or pur­plish.

The leaves are arranged spirally. The purplish petiole is 3-9 mm long. The blade is ovate to lance-shaped-ovate, measuring 3.5-14 cm x 2-6.5 cm, mostly subcordate at base, with regular margin, obtusely crenate-serrate with glandular, orange teeth, long acuminate to subcaudate at apex, with a small terminal gland, firmly coriaceous, dull dark green above, paler beneath and smooth or pubescent beneath.

The inflorescence is a simple, axillary, lax raceme, measures up to 10 cm long, many-flowered, hairless or densely pubescent. The pedicel is recurved and measures 3-10 mm long. The bracts and bracteoles are ovate-lance-shaped and ciliate. The sepal is about 2.5 mm long, deeply 5-partite, hairless on both sides or soft hairy inside, with ciliate lobes and pale green or red. The petal is bell-shaped, measures 3-4 mm long, usually smooth and whitish.

The fruit is 6-9 mm in diam­etre, white, rose-tinged or red to black-purple.

The brown seed is triangular-obovoid and measures 0.5 mm long.

Ecology / Cultivation

Gaultheria leucocarpa occurs in montane forests and in open, exposed places among brushwoods or shrubs at 1300-3300 m altitude. It is fairly common on the margins of craters, steep slopes, and in stony, volcanic or sometimes peaty and generally poor soils. It is mostly terrestrial, but occasionally found growing as an epiphyte.

Line Drawing / Photograph



  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No.19: Essential-oil plants. 1999, PROSEA.