The families of flowering plants
Habit and leaf form. Large shrubs, or lianas. Self supporting, or climbing. Leaves alternate; petiolate; non-sheathing; not gland-dotted; simple. Lamina entire; pinnately veined; cross-venulate. Leaves exstipulate. Lamina margins entire.
Axial (stem, wood) anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring, or anomalous (?).
Reproductive type, pollination. Plants polygamomonoecious. Female flowers with staminodes (ten, filiform). Gynoecium of male flowers pistillodial (the style lacking, the ovules abortive).
Inflorescence, floral, fruit and seed morphology. Flowers aggregated in inflorescences; in racemes. The ultimate inflorescence units racemose. Inflorescences axillary; short axillary racemes, the flowers long-pedicellate, opening at an early stage and enlarging subsequently. Flowers minutely bracteate; regular; cyclic. Floral receptacle developing a gynophore. Free hypanthium absent. Hypogynous disk present; extrastaminal; annular (cupular, thick and fleshy).
Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; 10; 2 whorled; isomerous. Calyx 5; 1 whorled; polysepalous; valvate. Corolla 5; 1 whorled; polypetalous, or gamopetalous (the petals loosely coherent or connivent at the thickened, scalelike bases or claws, the limbs free, lanceolate, thin, acuminate); imbricate. Petals clawed, or sessile.
Androecium 9–13. Androecial members branched, or unbranched (?); maturing centrifugally; free of the perianth; free of one another, or coherent (?). Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 9–13; diplostemonous to triplostemonous; filantherous (the filaments filiform). Anthers basifixed (small); dehiscing via longitudinal slits; latrorse; appendaged. The anther appendages apical (the connective forming a terminal knob).
Gynoecium of female-fertile flowers 3–5 carpelled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth to isomerous with the perianth. The pistil 3–5 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous; synstylovarious to eu-syncarpous; superior. Ovary 3–5 locular; shortly stipitate. Gynoecium stylate. Styles 1 (elongate); attenuate from the ovary; apical. Stigmas 1, or 3; if considered single, 4–5 lobed. Placentation axile. Ovules 3–10 per locule (several); 23 seriate in each locule.
Fruit fleshy; indehiscent; a berry (globose, brownish-scaly); many-seeded. Seeds small.
Geography, cytology. Paleotropical. Tropical. Tropical Africa.
Taxonomy. Subclass Dicotyledonae; Crassinucelli. Dahlgrens Superorder Violiflorae (?); Capparales (?). Cronquists Subclass Dilleniidae; Capparales. APG III core angiosperms; core eudicot; Superorder Rosanae; malvid. APG IV Order Brassicales.
Species 2. Genera 1; only genus, Pentadiplandra.
Economic uses, etc. The edible berries of P. brazeana have assorted herbalist applications, and are rendered very sweet to humans and monkeys by the proteins pentadin and brazzein. The latter has been patented as a far more more powerful, lower calorie sweetener than sugar.
Illustrations. • Pentadiplandra brazzeana: Hutchinson.
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: 15th April 2018. delta-intkey.com/angio’.