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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 4 | Portulacaceae

9. Talinum Adanson, Fam. Pl. 2: 245, 609. 1763.
[name conserved]

[Apparently from an African vernacular name]

Robert W. Kiger

Herbs [or subshrubs], perennial, caulescent, glabrous. Roots tuberous, fleshy to woody. Stems erect, simple or branching, sometimes suffrutescent. Leaves alternate or subopposite, short-petiolate or subsessile, articulate at base, not clasping, attachment points round; blade broadly planate, 1-7 cm wide, succulent or semisucculent, margins entire. Inflorescences lateral and/or terminal, paniculate, racemose, or cymose, not appearing secund, few- to many-flowered; peduncle very short to elongate. Flowers pedicellate; sepals deciduous or persistent, distinct; petals fugacious, 5 or rarely more, distinct; stamens 15-35, distinct, anther 2-locular, oblong; gynoecium 3[-5]-carpellate, ovary superior, placentation free-central, style 1 [absent], stigma(s) 1 or 3[-5]. Fruits capsular, longitudinally and tardily dehiscent from apex, 3[-5]-valved; valves wholly or partly deciduous, erect; exocarp and endocarp distinctly differentiated, sometimes separating, then endocarp persistent. Seeds many, black, ± compressed, circular-reniform, ca. 1 mm, strophiolate; seed coat lustrous, minutely tuberculate or striolate, pellicle absent. x = 12.

Species ca. 15 (2 in the flora): North America, West Indies, Central America, South America, Africa; introduced elsewhere.

As circumscribed here, Talinum is a primarily Old World genus with only two species found in North America. Other North American species that usually have been included in Talinum are recognized here under Phemeranthus (which see for discussion).


Poellnitz, K. von. 1934. Monographie der Gattung Talinum Adans. Repert. Spec. Nov. Regni Veg. 35: 1-32. Wilson, P. 1932d. Talinum. In: N. L. Britton et al., eds. 1905+. North American Flora.... 47+ vols. New York. Vol. 21, pp. 280-289.

1 Inflorescences racemose or cymose; pedicels triquetrous, distinctly thicker distally; petals 7 mm or longer; stigma 1, 3-lobed   1 Talinum fruticosum
+ Inflorescences paniculate; pedicels terete, ± uniformly slender; petals 6 mm or shorter; stigmas 3, linear   2 Talinum paniculatum

Lower Taxa


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