The Plant List — A working list for all plant species


Enter a Genus (eg Ocimum) or genus and species (eg Ocimum basilicum).

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Please refer now to the WFO Plant List.        

The Plant List (TPL) was a working list of all known plant species produced by the botanical community in response to Target 1 of the 2002-2010 Global Strategy for Plant Conservation (GSPC). TPL has been static since 2013, but was used as the starting point for the Taxonomic Backbone of the World Flora Online (WFO), and updated information can be found at

WFO is being developed by a consortium of leading botanical institutions worldwide in response to the 2011-2020 GSPC’s updated Target 1: to achieve an online Flora of all known plants by 2020. WFO welcomes feedback from users for improvements to its Taxonomic Backbone which is curated by a growing community of WFO Taxonomic Expert Networks (TENs).

The Plant List was a working list of all known plant species that aimed to be comprehensive for species of Vascular plant (flowering plants, conifers, ferns and their allies) and of Bryophytes (mosses and liverworts).

Collaboration between the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Missouri Botanical Garden enabled the creation of The Plant List by combining multiple checklist data sets held by these institutions and other collaborators.

Version 1.1 (September 2013) replaced Version 1.0 which remained accessible here. Version 1.1 includes new data sets, updated versions of the original data sets and improved algorithms to resolve logical conflicts between those data sets. The differences between versions are summarised here.

The Plant List provides the Accepted Latin name for most species, with links to all Synonyms by which that species has been known. Around 20% of names are unresolved indicating that the data sources included provided no evidence or view as to whether the name should be treated as accepted or not, or there were conflicting opinions that could not be readily resolved.

The Plant List is not perfect and represents work in progress. Our aims remain to produce a ‘best effort’ list, to demonstrate progress and to stimulate further work. Important limitations are summarised here.

Summary Statistics

The Plant List includes 1,064,035 scientific plant names of species rank. Of these 350,699 are accepted species names.

The Plant List contains 642 plant families and 17,020 plant genera.

The status of the 1,064,035 species names, are as follows:

Pie chart of binomial name statuses
Status Total
Accepted 350,699 33.0%
Synonym 470,624 44.2%
Unresolved 242,712 22.8%


Click on the major plant group of interest to explore the taxonomic hierarchy embedded within The Plant List.

Work down the taxonomic hierarchy from Major Group (to find out which Families belong to each), to Family (to discover the Genera belonging to each) and finally Genus (to list the Species in each).