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The families of flowering plants.                                                                                                                                                                

Ledocarpaceae Meyen

                        

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~Geraniaceae, Vivianaceae

Habit and leaf form. Small shrubs (or shrublets). Leaves usually opposite; simple, or compound; ternate in Ledocarpon pedunculare. Lamina when simple dissected, or entire. Leaves exstipulate (but the opposing leaf bases connected by a transverse line).

Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring. Wood parenchyma paratracheal.

Reproductive type, pollination. Plants hermaphrodite.

Inflorescence, floral, fruit and seed morphology. Flowers solitary, or aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; when aggregated, in corymbs. The ultimate inflorescence unit racemose. Inflorescences few-flowered corymbs. Flowers fragrant to malodorous; regular; 5 merous; cyclic; tetracyclic, or pentacyclic. Free hypanthium absent. Hypogynous disk absent.

Perianthwith distinct calyx and corolla (Rhyncotheca being excluded); 10; 2 whorled; isomerous. Calyx 5; 1 whorled; polysepalous; regular; imbricate. Epicalyxof bracteoles present. Corolla 5; 1 whorled; polypetalous; imbricate, or contorted. Petals entire.

Androecium 10. Androecial members free of the perianth; free of one another; 2 whorled. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 10; diplostemonous; alternisepalous; both alternating with and opposite the corolla members. Anthers dehiscing via longitudinal slits; extrorse, or introrse. Pollen grains nonaperturate.

Gynoecium 3 carpelled, or 5 carpelled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth, or isomerous with the perianth. The pistil 3 celled, or 5 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous; synstylovarious; superior. Ovary 3 locular, or 5 locular. Gynoecium shortly stylate, or non-stylate. Stigmas 3, or 5. Placentation axile, or apical. Ovules 2 per locule, or 5–50 per locule (‘many’); pendulous; epitropous; with ventral raphe; collateral (when two), or biseriate (when ‘many’); anatropous, or campylotropous (?).

Fruit non-fleshy; dehiscent; a capsule (sometimes beaked). Capsules valvular (‘septifragal’), or loculicidal. Seeds thinly endospermic (the endosperm fleshy). Cotyledons 2; rolled. Embryo curved, or bent.

Geography, cytology. Neotropical. Andes.

Taxonomy.Subclass Dicotyledonae; Crassinucelli. Dahlgren’s Superorder Rutiflorae; Geraniales. Cronquist’s Subclass Rosidae; Geraniales. APG 3 core angiosperms; core eudicot; Superorder Rosanae; malvid; Order Geraniales (as a synonym of Vivianaceae?).

Species 11. Genera 2; Balbisia (Ledocarpon), Wendtia.

 Illustrations:

  • Ledocarpon pedunculare: Bot. Reg. 1392, 1831.
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