The Genera of Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae and Swartzieae
Habit and leaf form. Trees (huge); without tendrils; unarmed. Without specialized short shoots. Phyllotaxy spiral. Leaves compound; pinnate; paripinnate. Leaflets few per leaf; opposite or sub-opposite; with petiolules not noticeably twisted. Stipules absent or early caducous or very inconspicuous. Stipels absent.
Inflorescence and floral morphology. Flowers small; hermaphrodite; pentamerous; in panicles (of spikes); not distichous. Inflorescences terminal; of racemose units. Bracts absent at anthesis (caducous, small). Bracteoles absent; absent at anthesis. Hypanthium present (slight), or absent. Length of floral tube relative to total hypanthium plus calyx length, about 0.5. Calyx gamosepalous; not covering the rest of the flower in bud; more or less regular; 5 partite; imbricate. Corolla present; actinomorphic to slightly zygomorphic; polypetalous; without any greatly reduced petals. Petals 5. Clawed petals present. Androecium of ten parts (declinate); with staminodia (5, alternating with petals). Fertile stamens 5. Anthers attached at base of connective (but sagittate below; covered with long deciduous white hairs). Ovary stipitate; free. Stigma not peltate (very small). Ovules few, or numerous, or solitary.
Fruit, seed and seedling. Fruit a follicle; becoming distinctly woody; straight; not winged. Seeds non-endospermic; with a straight or slightly oblique radicle.
Transverse section of lamina. Leaves without conspicuous phloem transfer cells in the minor veins. Druses absent from the mesophyll. Mesophyll secretory cavities absent. Adaxial hypodermis present. Leaf girders common (the veins transcurrent). Laminae dorsiventral. Mesophyll without unaligned fibres or sclereids. Minor veins mainly with abundant accompanying fibres.
Leaf lamina epidermes. Epidermal crystals not seen either adaxially or abaxially. Simple unbranched hairs not seen. No compound or branched eglandular hairs seen. Capitate glands not seen. Expanded and embedded hair-feet absent. Adaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls markedly sinuous in high-focus optical section; not conspicuously pitted; of medium thickness. Stomata adaxially very rare. Abaxial stomata predominantly paracytic. Abaxial epidermis not papillate. Abaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls markedly sinuous in high-focus optical section; not conspicuously pitted in optical section; staining normally with safranin; medium-thick.
Wood anatomy. Wood without septate fibres; not storied; without normal intercellular canals; without traumatic canals. Intervascular pits very small.
Pollen ultrastructure. Tectum punctate; rugulose punctate. Length of colpi greater than one half pole to pole distance (without a margocolpus).
Cytology, geography, etc. 6 species. Tropical South America, West Indies. Not widely cultivated.
The interactive key provides access to the character list, full and partial descriptions, diagnostic descriptions, differences and similarities between taxa, lists of taxa exhibiting specified attributes, and summaries of attributes within groups of taxa.
Cite this publication as: ‘Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M.J. 1993 onwards. The genera of Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae and Swartzieae: descriptions, identification, and information retrieval. In English and French; French translation by E. Chenin. Version: 22nd March 2009. http://delta-intkey.com’.