Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage
|Specimen Records:||434||Public Records:||279|
|Specimens with Sequences:||425||Public Species:||97|
|Specimens with Barcodes:||420||Public BINs:||0|
|Species With Barcodes:||98|
Gaultheria mucronata (Chilean Spanish: chaura), syn. Pernettya mucronata, is a species of flowering plant in the family Ericaceae, native to southern Argentina and Chile. It is a compact, bushy, evergreen shrub with glossy green leaves and solitary white flowers in spring, followed in autumn by showy globose berries up to 1.5 cm in diameter, in shades from deep plum purple through pink to pure white. It is dioecious, meaning that both male and female plants must be grown together in order to produce fruit. It prefers moist, shaded conditions.
Its fruits are edible when ripe, they are sweet and juicy but somewhat tasteless, hence useful as survival food. In volcanic areas of southern Chile Gaultheria mucronata is one of the dominant plant species above the tree line.
- 'Bell's Seedling' (deep red fruit)
- 'Crimsonia' (large crimson fruits)
- 'Mulberry Wine' (purple fruit)
- U.S. Department of Agriculture (2008) Gaultheria mucronata 
- "RHS Plant Selector - Gaultheria mucronata 'Bell's Seedling'". Retrieved 20 June 2013.
- "RHS Plant Selector - Gaultheria mucronata 'Crimsonia'". Retrieved 20 June 2013.
- "RHS Plant Selector - Gaultheria mucronata 'Mulberry Wine'". Retrieved 20 June 2013.
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2009)|
Gaultheria is a genus of about 170-180 species of shrubs in the family Ericaceae. The name memorializes Jean François Gaultier of Quebec, a mis-spelt honour bestowed by the Scandinavian Pehr Kalm in 1748. These plants are native to Asia, North and South America, and Australasia. In the past, the Southern Hemisphere species were often treated in a separate genus Pernettya; however, there is no consistent reliable morphological or genetic difference to support recognition of two genera, and they are now united in the single genus Gaultheria.
The species vary from low, ground-hugging shrubs less than 10 cm tall, up to 2.5 m tall, or, in the case of G. fragrantissima from the Himalaya, even a small tree up to 5–6 m tall. The leaves are evergreen, alternate (opposite in G. oppositifolia from New Zealand), simple, and vary between species from 0.3–10 cm long; the margins are finely serrated or bristly in most species, but entire in some. The flowers are solitary or in racemes, bell-shaped, with a five-lobed corolla; flower colour ranges from white to pink to red. The fruit is a fleshy berry in many species, a dry capsule in some, with numerous small seeds.
Several species are grown as ornamental shrubs in gardens, particularly G. mucronata (Pernettya mucronata) from southern Chile and Argentina and G. shallon (Salal) from the Pacific Northwest of North America. Many of the smaller species are suitable for rock gardens. Like most other ericaceous plants, gaultheria does best in a peaty soil that never fully dries out.
The fruit of many gaultherias is edible, particularly that of salal, which makes an excellent jelly. Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens) is the traditional source of wintergreen flavouring; its leaves can be used to make a tea, and its berries eaten as-is. The fruit of most other gaultheria species is insipid in flavour and not extensively consumed.
Gaultheria yunnanensis shows anti-inflammatory properties and is used in Chinese herbal medicine for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, swelling and pain.
Selected species 
- Bernard Boivin: GAULTIER (Gautier, Gauthier, or Gaulthier, but he signed Gaultier), JEAN-FRANÇOIS. In: Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online
- Zhang D, Liu R, Sun L, Huang C, Wang C, Zhang DM, Zhang TT, Du G.,"Anti-Inflammatory Activity of Methyl Salicylate Glycosides Isolated from Gaultheria yunnanensis (Franch.) Rehder." Molecules. 2011;16(5):3875-84
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