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The genera of Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae & Swartzieae

L. Watson and M.J. Dallwitz

Lophocarpinia Burkart

Cenostigma aculeatifolium Burkart

Type species: L. aculeatifolia Burkart.

Habit and leaf form. Small-leaved shrubs; leaves and inflorescences crowded on ‘short shoots’; armed (with hard, divaricate, spine-tipped branchlets).

Phyllotaxy spiral. The leaves compound; pinnate; paripinnate; with rachides adaxially ridged. The leaflets few per leaf (2–3 pairs); obovate, opposite or sub-opposite; sessile to sub-sessile. Stipules present, persistent and conspicuous in mature leaves; ovate, with setose tips; not connate. Stipels present (very small, subulate).

Inflorescence and floral morphology. The flowers more or less aggregated into inflorescences (at the bases of the short-shoots). Bracts very small. Bracteoles absent; absent at anthesis.

The flowers hermaphrodite; pentamerous. Hypanthium present; campanulate. The perianth comprising distinct calyx and corolla. Calyx 5; covering the rest of the flower in bud; polysepalous; markedly irregular (having a large, naviculate abaxial sepal that encloses the stamens and pistil in the bud); members imbricate. Corolla present; very irregular (the fleshy adaxial petal differing from the others); 5; without greatly reduced members; polypetalous. Petals imbricate; imbricate-ascending. The androecium comprising 10 members; declinate; members all free of one another (with pilose filaments); comprising only fertile stamens. Fertile stamens 10. Anthers attached well above the base of the connective; dehiscing introrsely. Ovary shortly stipitate. Stigma small, terminal. Ovules numerous.

Fruit, seed and seedling. Fruit a two-valved pod; segmented, curved (incurved or falcate); with elongated joints, internally septate; winged longitudinally; 4 winged (with four cristate wings). Seeds with a straight or slightly oblique radicle.

Transverse section of lamina. Leaves without conspicuous phloem transfer cells in the minor veins. Druses common in the mesophyll. Mesophyll secretory cavities (gland-dots) common; without a lining of epithelium. Adaxial hypodermis absent. Leaf girders absent. Laminae dorsiventral. Mesophyll without unaligned fibres or sclereids. Minor veins lacking accompanying fibrous tissue.

Leaf lamina epidermes. Epidermal crystals not seen either adaxially or abaxially. Simple unbranched hairs common; smooth. No compound or branched eglandular hairs seen. Capitate glands not seen. Hooked hairs not seen. Cassieae-type leaf pseudo-glands not seen. Expanded and embedded hair-feet absent. Basally bent hairs present. Adaxial: Adaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls straight in optical section; of medium thickness. Stomata adaxially common and widespread. Abaxial: Abaxial stomata not predominantly paracytic (actinocytic). Abaxial epidermis not papillate. Abaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls straight, or gently undulating; scarcely staining with safranin; medium-thin.

Species number and distribution. 1 species (L. aculeatifolia). Paraguay, Argentina.

Tribe. Caesalpinieae.


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, and classification. See also Guidelines for using data taken from Web publications.


Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1993 onwards. The genera of Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae and Swartzieae: descriptions, illustrations, identification, and information retrieval. In English and French. Version: 22nd March 2017. delta-intkey.com/caes’.

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