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Family :

LORANTHACEAE

Division :

Angiosperm

Description


Woody parasitic or hemi-parasitic shrubs. Leaves mostly opposite, less often alternate or whorled, simple, entire, sometimes reduced to scales, stipules absent. Inflorescence a raceme or cyme, rarely a spike, flowers often in heads or fascicles. Flowers regular or zygomorphic, hermaphrodite or unisexual and monoecious. Calyx adnate to ovary. Petals free or united into a tube often split down on one side. Stamens as many as petals, anthers normally 2-locular, sometime 1-locular. Disk present or absent. Ovary inferior, 1-locular, sunk in and united with receptacle, ovules mostly not distinct, styles simple or absent. Fruit a berry or drupe. Seeds solitary, devoid of testa, but with a viscid layer around, embryo large, sometimes up to 3 in one seed.

Key to the Genus

Serial Key Reference
1a. Flowers 6-merous, subtended by 1 bract and 2 bracteoles Macrosolen
1b. Flowers 4- or 5- merous, subtended by a bract only 2
2a. Flowers in umbels or in sessile clusters 3
2b. Flowers in racemes or spikes 4
3a. Inflorescence a cluster of sessile flowers surrounded by a conspicuous involucre; corolla actinomorphic, without a conspicuous split in one side Tolypanthus
3b. Inflorescence a few flowered axillary umbel, involucre absent; corolla zygomorphic; petals with a longitudinal split on one side and all reflexed in the same direction opposite the split Taxillus
4a. Corolla gamopetalous 5
4b. Corolla polypetalous. Ovary usually rounded; fruit ovoid, ellipsoidal or oblong-ovoid Helixanthera
5a. Flowers 4-merous; fruit clavate and strongly attenuated towards base Scurrula
5b. Flowers 5-merous; fruit ellipsoidal to ovate, not attenuated towards base Dendrophthoe