The families of flowering plants
Habit and leaf form. Small trees, or shrubs. Plants non-succulent. Leaves alternate to opposite; non-sheathing; simple. Lamina entire. Leaves exstipulate. Lamina margins entire.
Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring (?). Xylem with fibre tracheids.
Reproductive type, pollination. Plants dioecious. Gynoecium of male flowers vestigial (minute), or absent.
Inflorescence, floral, fruit and seed morphology. Flowers solitary (female), or aggregated in inflorescences (male); when solitary and female, terminal; when male, in cymes, or in corymbs. The ultimate inflorescence unit cymose. Inflorescences terminal, or axillary; the males in few-flowered, corymbose terminal or axillary cymes. Flowers regular; 4–5 merous; cyclic. Free hypanthium absent.
Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; 6–10 (male flowers), or 8–10 (female flowers); 2 whorled; isomerous. Calyx 3–5 (male flowers), or 4–5 (female flowers); 1 whorled; gamosepalous; 35 blunt-lobed (male flowers), or toothed (minutely, in female flowers), or entire (sometimes, in both male and female flowers); cupuliform (and sometimes flattened, in male flowers), or tubular (shortly, in female flowers); open in bud (?). Corolla 3–5 (male flowers), or 4–5 (female flowers); 1 whorled; polypetalous; imbricate; regular; at least somewhat fleshy; deciduous.
Androecium 3–5. Androecial members free of the perianth; free of one another; 1 whorled. Androecium in male flowers exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 3–5; isomerous with the perianth; oppositisepalous; filantherous (the filaments short and thick, the anthers rather large, ellipsoid). Anthers dorsifixed (despite being extrorse); non-versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; extrorse. Pollen grains aperturate; 3(–4) aperturate; colporate (or irregularly 34 aperturate).
Gynoecium 2 carpelled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth. The pistil 2 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous; synstylovarious; inferior. Ovary 2 locular. Epigynous disk present (in female flowers, fleshy and four-angled). Gynoecium stylate. Styles 1; apical; shorter than the ovary (thick, persistent). Stigmas 2 (these large); commissural (in Kaliphora, which may belong here), or dorsal to the carpels (?). Placentation axile. Ovules 2–6 per locule; pendulous to ascending; superposed, or biseriate; anatropous.
Fruit non-fleshy; dehiscent, or indehiscent; a capsule, or capsular-indehiscent. Capsules when dehiscent, loculicidal. Seeds copiously endospermic, or non-endospermic; winged (and compressed), or wingless (subglobose).
Seedling. Germination phanerocotylar.
Physiology, biochemistry. Iridoids detected; Route I type (normal). Proanthocyanidins present.
Geography, cytology. Paleotropical. Sub-tropical to tropical. Southwest and tropical East Africa, Madagascar.
Taxonomy. Subclass Dicotyledonae; Tenuinucelli (?). Dahlgrens Superorder Corniflorae; Cornales. Cronquists Subclass Rosidae; Rosales. APG 3 core angiosperms; core eudicot; Superorder Asteranae; lamiid; Order Solanales.
Species 4. Genera 2, or 3; Grevea, Montinia (and Kaliphora?).
General remarks. This description very thin.
This description is offered for casual browsing only. We strongly advise against extracting comparative information from it. This is much more easily achieved using 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).
Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1992 onwards. The families of flowering plants: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. Version: 19th December 2012. http://delta-intkey.com’.