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The families of flowering plants

L. Watson and M.J. Dallwitz

Eremosynaceae Takht.

~ Escalloniaceae, Saxifragaceae sensu lato.

Habit and leaf form. Small, densely glandular-hairy herbs. Annual; with a basal aggregation of leaves. Mesophytic. Leaves alternate; spiral; somewhat fleshy (at least the cauline members), or ‘herbaceous’; petiolate to sessile (the petioles shortening acropetally); non-sheathing; simple; epulvinate. Lamina entire to dissected (the basal members), or dissected (the cauline members — becoming smaller and increasingly dissected acropetally); when dissected, basically palmatifid (the upper members stagshornlike); basically palmately veined (the three main veins parallel in the leaf base/petiole, dichotomising above); cross-venulate. Leaves exstipulate; leaf development not ‘graminaceous’.

Leaf anatomy. Hairs present; eglandular and glandular. Unicellular hairs simple. Complex hairs absent.

Reproductive type, pollination. Plants hermaphrodite.

Inflorescence, floral, fruit and seed morphology. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; in cymes. The ultimate inflorescence units cymose. Inflorescences terminal; dichotomous cymes. Flowers bracteate to ebracteate (small bracts with the infloresence branches, not with individual flowers); ebracteolate; minute; regular; 5 merous; cyclic; tetracyclic. Free hypanthium absent. Hypogynous disk absent.

Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; 10; 2 whorled; isomerous. Calyx 5; 1 whorled; very slightly gamosepalous, or polysepalous (there being only the merest rim external to the corolla); deeply blunt-lobed; regular; persistent; valvate. Corolla 5; 1 whorled; polypetalous; regular; deciduous. Petals clawed to sessile.

Androecium 5. Androecial members free of the perianth; all equal; free of one another; 1 whorled. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 5; isomerous with the perianth; oppositisepalous; alternating with the corolla members; filantherous (the filaments subulate, the anthers small). Anthers dorsifixed; versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; introrse to latrorse.

Gynoecium 2 carpelled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth. The pistil 2 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous; synstylovarious; partly inferior (about a quarter to half inferior). Ovary 2 locular. Epigynous disk absent. Gynoecium stylate. Styles 2; free to partially joined (at the base); abruptly attenuate from the ovary; apical. Stigmas 2; dorsal to the carpels. Placentation basal, or axile to basal (on the basal angle). Ovules 1 per locule; funicled; ascending; arillate; anatropous.

Fruit non-fleshy; dehiscent; a capsule (‘subdidymous’). Capsules loculicidal. Seeds endospermic. Embryo straight.

Geography, cytology. Temperate. Southwest Australia.

Taxonomy. Subclass Dicotyledonae; Tenuinucelli. Dahlgren’s Superorder Corniflorae; Cornales (?). Cronquist’s Subclass Rosidae; Rosales. APG 3 core angiosperms; core eudicot; Superorder Asteranae; campanulid; Order Escalloniales (as a synonym of Escalloniaceae?).

Species 1. Genera 1; only genus, Eremosyne.

General remarks. Differing from Escalloniaceae sensu stricti (q.v.) in the herbceous habit, palmately veined leaves, absence of a hypogynous disk, and the one-ovuled ovary locules.

Illustrations. • Eremosyne pectinata: Nat. Pflanzenfam. III (1891). • Eremosyne pectinata: Endlicher, Iconographia Genera Plantarum (1838).


We advise against extracting comparative information from the descriptions. This is much more easily achieved using the DELTA data files or the interactive key, which allows access to the character list, illustrations, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting or lacking specified attributes, distributions of character states within any set of taxa, geographical distribution, genera included in each family, and classifications (Dahlgren; Dahlgren, Clifford, and Yeo; Cronquist; APG). See also Guidelines for using data taken from Web publications.


Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1992 onwards. The families of flowering plants: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. Version: 20th July 2017. delta-intkey.com/angio’.

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