Gomortega keule (syn. G. nitida; Spanish names keule, queule, and hualhual) is a tree native to Chile. It is the sole species of the genus Gomortega and, according to the APG IV system of 2016 (unchanged from the APG systems of 2009, 2003 and 1998), of the monotypic family Gomortegaceae, assigned to the order Laurales in the clade magnoliids.[3]

Gomortega keule in Biobío Region
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Magnoliids
Order: Laurales
Family: Gomortegaceae
Genus: Gomortega
Ruiz & Pav.
G. keule
Binomial name
Gomortega keule

Adenostemum nitidum (Ruiz & Pav.) Pers.
Gomortega nitida Ruiz & Pav.
Keulia chilensis Molina
Lucuma keule Molina


Fruits of G. keule

Evergreen trees, aromatic, gray bark with shallow longitudinal fissures. The leaves are petiolate, simple, entire, obovate to lanceolate, coriaceous. The stems have unilacunar nodes and with two foliar traces. The branches are quadrangular.

The edible fruit is a uni or trilocular yellow drupe, usually with 1 (-2) seeds, fleshy mesocarp, pleasant, stony endocarp. There are 1-2 seeds per fruit, with abundant, oily endosperm, large embryo, dicotyledonous.

The chromosome number is n = 21, 2n = 42.


Gomortega keule grows only in a very narrow habitat range in coastal Central Chile, including the Maulino forest[4] and parts of the Chilean matorral.[5] It is a characterisc tree species of the Maulino forest alongside Nothofagus glauca, Nothofagus leonii and Nothofagus alessandri.[4]

The species is endangered of extinction due to overharvesting, clearing the forests where it is found for agriculture and silviculture.

Gomortega keule produces a yellow edible sweet fruit about 34–45 millimetres (1.3–1.8 in) in diameter, harvested for making a kind of marmalade.

See also

  • Beilschmiedia berteroana


  1. Echeverría, C. & Campos, S. (2019). "Gomortega keule". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2019: e.T31357A2805379. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-2.RLTS.T31357A2805379.en. Retrieved July 11, 2020.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2009). "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 161 (2): 105–121. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8339.2009.00996.x.
  3. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (2016). "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG IV". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 181 (1): 1–20. doi:10.1111/boj.12385. ISSN 0024-4074.{{cite journal}}: CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  4. San Martín, José; Donoso, Claudio (1995). "Estructura florística e impacto antrópico en el bosque Maulino de Chile" [Floristic structure and human impact on the Maulino forest of Chile]. In Armesto, Juan J.; Villagrán, Carolina; Arroyo, Mary Kalin (eds.). Ecología de los bosques nativos de Chile (in Spanish). Santiago de Chile: Editorial Universitaria. pp. 153–167. ISBN 9561112841.
  5. C. Michael Hogan & World Wildlife Fund. 2013. Chilean matorral. ed. M.McGinley. Encyclopedia of Earth. National Council for Science and the Environment. Washington DC

The species

The family

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