Phoebe is a genus of evergreen trees and shrubs belonging to the Laurel family, Lauraceae. There are approximately 100 species in the genus, distributed in tropical and subtropical Asia and neotropical America.
Phoebe species are evergreen shrubs or trees with pinnate leaves. The flowers are hermaphrodite, white, small and fragrant, and are grouped in branched terminal inflorescences in the form of panicles. The bracts are all of equal length or the outer ones are slightly shorter than the inner ones. The ovary is oval to spherical. The stigma is capitate or bowl-shaped. The fruits are enveloped by the enlarged bracts. Fruits are usually oval to spherical. The fruit is a berry and has only a single seed that is frequently dispersed by birds.
100 species of Phoebe are currently reported in Asia, with 27 species endemic to China.
The fruits of the genus are fleshy berries.
Large to small trees, 5-15 m tall. Bark gray-white. Branchlets, petioles, and inflorescences densely yellowish brown or gray-blackish pubescent to tomentose. Petiole 1-2.5 cm; leaf blade obovate, elliptic-obovate, broadly oblanceolate, or oblanceolate, 8-27 × 2.5-9 cm, leathery, abaxially pubescent to villous, adaxially glabrous or hairy along veins, midrib and lateral veins adaxially impressed, lateral veins 8-13 pairs, curved, anastomosing at margin, veinlets numerous, densely reticulate, base attenuate, apex acute-acuminate or acute-caudate-acuminate. Panicles 7-15(-18) cm, branched at top of peduncle. Flowers 4-5 mm. Perianth subequal, ovate, hairy on both surfaces. Filaments hairy, particularly in 3rd series, those of 3rd series with sessile glands at base. Staminodes hairy. Ovary globose, glabrous; stigma indistinct or dish-shaped. Fruit ovoid, ca. 1 cm × 5-6 mm; fruiting pedicel somewhat or conspicuously thickened, hairy; persistent perianth lobes hairy on both surfaces, loose. Seed with solitary embryo, symmetrical on both sides. Fl. Apr-May, fr. Sep-Oct.
Mixed broad-leaved forests; usually below 1000 m. Anhui, Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi, Sichuan, Yunnan, Zhejiang [Vietnam].