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Creeping or twining herbs or shrubs, often milky sap. Leaves simple alternate, exstipulate, petiolate, entire or variously lobed and dissected. Inflorescence cymose, simple or compound, bracteate, often involucres. Flowers actinomorphic, hermaphrodite, 5-merous, showy. Sepals 5, free, imbricate, persistent or accrescent. Petals 5, gamopetalous, campanulate or funnel-shaped, urceolate, salver-shaped, contorted or rarely imbricate in bud. Stamens 5, epipetalous, alternating with corolla lobes, filaments included or exserted, anthers oblong. Ovary annular or cupular disc, superior, bicarpellary, united, 2-4 celled, ovules 1-2 in each, style 1, rarely 2, stigmas 2-4, entire or 2-lobed, capitate or peltate. Fruit valvular or circumscissile capsule or berry.

Key to the Genus

Serial Key Reference
1a. Petals more or less bilobed; sigma 1, 5-10 rayed; woody climbers, shrubs or small trees Erycibe
1b. Petals entire or corolla only shallowly 5-lobed, sigma 1-4, globose, ellipsoid or linear, never 5-10 rayed 2
2a. Styles 2, free or united at base 3
2b. Styles 1; sometimes 2 minute branches concealed by the sigmas 4
3a. Styles free, each forked into 2-filiform branches, small, prostrate or ascending herbs Evolvulus
3b. Styles united, stigmas globose to peltate, usually large twiners Bonamia
4a. Pollen spinulose 5
4b. Pollen smooth 9
5a. Corolla broadly or narowly urceolate, corolla not narrowed into a short tube at bose; stamens included Lepistemon
5b. Corolla tubular, campanulate, funnel-shaped or salver-shaped 6
6a. Fruiting sepals enlarged, tubrous, completely enclosing the ripe fruits; lower surface of leaves with minute black glands Stictocardia
6b. Fruiting sepals if enlarged not completely enclosing the ripe fruit, lower surface of leaves without black glands 7
7a. Fruit fleshy or leathery berry; corolla mostly hairy on the midpetaline bands outside Argyreia
7b. Fruit thin walled capsules, dehiscing by values or irregularly; corolla mostly glabrous outside 8
8a. Inflorescences simple cyme Ipomoea
8b. Inflorescences long peduncled umbellate cyme Quamoclit
9a. Stigmas globular 10
9b. Stigma filiform, elliptic or ovate-oblong 12
10a. Capsule circumscissile, upper part separating from the lower stem, narrowly 3-5 winged or angular Operculina
10b. Capsules opening by values or irregularly dehiscent 11
11a. Capsules valvular, valves silvery white inside; leaves oblong, attenuate towards base Aniseia
11b. Capsule irregularly dehiscent, valves not silvery white inside; leaves not attenuate towards base Merremia
12a. Stigmas filiform or elliptic; hairs if present stellate Jacquemontia
12b. Stigmas ovate oblong; hairs if present not stellate Hewittia