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The genera of Leguminosae-Caesalpinioideae & Swartzieae

L. Watson and M.J. Dallwitz

Zollernia Nees

Acidandra Mart. ex Endl., Coquebertia Brongn.

Type species: Z. falcata Maximil. & Nees.

Habit and leaf form. Trees, or shrubs; unarmed.

Phyllotaxy spiral. The leaves ostensibly simple; their margins usually serrate or prickly, with a predominant midrib. Stipules present, persistent and conspicuous in mature leaves.

Inflorescence and floral morphology. The inflorescences axillary, or terminal; branched; of racemose units; panicles (of racemes). The flowers not distichous. Bracts small. Bracteoles present (minute), or absent; small, not enclosing the flower buds; absent at anthesis; not valvate.

The flowers hermaphrodite; not ‘papilionaceous’; not pentamerous throughout; departing from pentamery in the calyx and in the androecium; coloured. Floral tube length relative to total hypanthium + calyx length 1. Hypanthium absent, the androecium hypogynous. The perianth comprising distinct calyx and corolla. Calyx covering the rest of the flower in bud; Swartzieae type (closed before flowering, splitting more or less irregularly into valvate lobes or teeth) (the limb closed, acuminate and entire in the asymmetrically lanceolate bud, later splitting and reflexing or falling); gamosepalous; members not imbricate. Corolla present; slightly irregular (the vexillum being broader); 5; without greatly reduced members; polypetalous. Petals imbricate; imbricate-ascending (cf. the Flora Brasiliensis floral diagram); yellow, or red. The androecium comprising 9–13 members; not declinate; members all free of one another; members all more or less equal in length (with very short filaments); comprising only fertile stamens. Fertile stamens 9–13. Anthers uniform, linear, acuminate attached at the base of the connective; dehiscing longitudinally. Ovary sessile or subsessile to stipitate; free. Stigma not dilated (the style short). Ovules numerous.

Fruit, seed and seedling. Fruit a two-valved pod; ovoid, thick, 2-valved. Seeds non-endospermic; not arillate; with an inflexed radicle; amyloid-negative; with starch.

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 absent. 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 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. Adaxial: Adaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls straight in optical section; not conspicuously pitted; medium-thin. Stomata adaxially very rare. Abaxial: Abaxial stomata not predominantly paracytic (anomcytic to cyclocytic). Abaxial epidermis not papillate. Abaxial interveinal epidermal cell walls straight, or gently undulating; not conspicuously pitted in optical section; staining normally with safranin; medium-thin.

Wood anatomy. Wood storied.

Pollen ultrastructure. Tectum punctate; smooth punctate, or puncticulate. Length of colpi greater than one half pole to pole distance, or less than one half pole to pole distance.

Species number and distribution. 6 species. Central and tropical South America.

Tribe. Papilionoideae-Exostyleae (former Swartzieae).

Miscellaneous. Illustrations: • Z. ilicifolia: Fl. Brasiliensis 15 (1870).


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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