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4. Alismataceae

泽泻科 ze xie ke

Authors: Qingfeng Wang, Robert R. Haynes & C. Barre Hellquist

Herbs, perennial or rarely annual, aquatic or of marshes, sometimes rhizomatous. Leaves basal, linear, lanceolate, elliptic to ovate or orbicular, or sagittate, with elongated sheathing petioles; principal veins parallel with margins and converging toward apex and connected by transverse veins. Flowers often whorled at nodes of scape forming racemes, panicles, or umbels, pedicellate, actinomorphic, bisexual, unisexual, or polygamous, usually bracteate. Sepals 3, persistent, green. Petals 3, deciduous, usually white, sometimes yellowish. Stamens 3 to numerous, whorled, with elongated filaments; anthers 2-celled, extrorse, opening by longitudinal slits. Carpels 3 to numerous, whorled or spirally arranged, free; ovules 1 to several; style persistent. Fruit a cluster or whorl of laterally compressed achenes, drupelets, or occasionally follicles. Seeds curved, with a horseshoe-shaped embryo; endosperm absent.

About 13 genera and ca. 100 species: cosmopolitan, especially abundant in temperate and tropical regions of the N Hemisphere; six genera (one introduced) and 18 species (three endemic, one introduced) in China.

Chen Yaodong. 1992. Alismataceae. In: Sun Xiangzhong, ed., Fl. Reipubl. Popularis Sin. 8: 127-145; Zhou Lingyun. 1992. Butomopsis and Limnocharis. In: Sun Xiangzhong, ed., Fl. Reipubl. Popularis Sin. 8: 147-151.

1 Stamens 8 or 9, or numerous, with sterile staminodes in outermost whorl, filaments flattened; stigmas sessile, carpels 6-9 or numerous, crowded into a head; aquatic herbs with terminal umbels; bracts forming an involucre   (2)
+ Stamens 3 to numerous; style persistent, carpels few to numerous; aquatic or marsh herbs with racemes, panicles, or umbels   (3)
2 (1) Petals white; stamens 8 or 9; carpels 6-9; pedicels slender.   5 Butomopsis
+ Petals yellowish; stamens numerous; carpels numerous; pedicels thick.   6 Limnocharis
3 (1) Flowers unisexual or polygamous.   1 Sagittaria
+ Flowers bisexual   (4)
4 (3) Stamens 6; carpels arranged in a single whorl.   4 Alisma
+ Stamens (6-)9 to numerous; carpels spirally arranged   (5)
5 (4) Inflorescences much branched, paniculate; fruitlets drupaceous, swollen, with woody endocarp and spongy exocarp.   3 Caldesia
+ Inflorescences unbranched, flowers usually solitary or up to 3 in inflorescence; fruitlets achenelike, laterally compressed.   2 Ranalisma

Lower Taxa


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