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FOC | Family List | FOC Vol. 11 | Celastraceae

4. Celastrus Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 1: 196. 1753.

南蛇藤属 nan she teng shu

Authors: Zhixiang Zhang & Michele Funston

Monocelastrus F. T. Wang & T. Tang.

Scandent to twining shrubs, deciduous or evergreen, glabrous or pubescent, with oblong or circular gray lenticels; bud scales imbricate. Leaves alternate, subentire or serrate; stipules small, linear, deciduous. Inflorescences axillary or terminal, cymose, thyrsoid, or flowers solitary. Flowers unisexual, rarely bisexual, rarely dioecious, 5-merous, greenish or yellowish white. Disk membranous or fleshy, annular to cupuliform, entire or slightly 5-lobed, intrastaminal; anthers longitudinally dehiscent, introrse. Ovary 3-locular, separate from or slightly adnate to disk; ovules erect, 1 or 2 per locule. Capsule globose, yellowish, leathery, loculicidally dehiscent. Seeds 1-6, ellipsoid, enclosed in aril; aril carnose, red to orange-red.

About 30 species: tropical, subtropical, and temperate zones of Asia, Australia, and North and South America, as well as Madagascar; 25 species (16 endemic) in China.

This genus is divided into two subgenera: Celastrus subg. Celastrus and C. subg. Racemocelastrus Ding Hou; the latter does not occur in China.

1 Fruit 1-loculed, 1-seeded; evergreen (C. sect. Sempervirentes)   (2)
+ Fruit 3-loculed, 3-6-seeded; deciduous or evergreen   (5)
2 (1) Lenticels of young branchlets not obvious; floral disk thin, cupuliform; stamens inserted on margin of disk; fruit small, 6.5-10 mm wide, globose   (3)
+ Lenticels of young branchlets obvious; floral disk carnose, shallowly discoid or slightly pillow-form; stamens inserted below disk; fruit large, 8-12 mm wide, widely elliptic, rarely globose   (4)
3 (2) Leaves narrowly rectangular-elliptic, narrowly ovate-elliptic to elliptic-oblanceolate; secondary veins 5-7 pairs; valves without transverse rugae.   22 C. hindsii
+ Leaves ovate or widely elliptic; secondary veins 7-10 pairs; valves with transverse rugae.   23 C. tonkinensis
4 (2) Young branchlets, leaves, and valves puce when dry; leaf blade papery to thinly leathery; valves rugose and curly when fruit ripe.   24 C. monospermus
+ Young branchlets, leaves, and valves yellowish green when dry; leaf blade thickly leathery; valves not rugose and curly when fruit ripe.   25 C. virens
5 (1) Inflorescences generally terminal, occasionally axillary in upper part of branches (C. sect. Celastrus)   (6)
+ Inflorescences axillary, or both axillary and terminal (C. sect. Axillares)   (7)
6 (5) Branchlets not obviously angled; leaf blade small, 5-10 × 2.5-5 cm, narrowly elongate; sepals imbricate; disk cupulate.   1 C. paniculatus
+ Branchlets generally 4-6-angled; leaf blade large, 7-18 × 5-14 cm, relatively broad; sepals valvate; disk disciform.   2 C. angulatus
7 (5) Inflorescences usually axillary; seeds generally crescentiform or curved-semiorbicular; if seeds elliptic, bud scales thornlike (C. flagellaris)   (8)
+ Inflorescences both axillary and terminal; seeds usually elliptic   (15)
8 (7) Outer scales of buds thornlike, thorn 1.5-2.5 mm; seeds elliptic.   14 C. flagellaris
+ Bud scales not thornlike; seeds crescentiform or curved-semiorbicular   (9)
9 (8) Petiole short, less than 9 mm   (10)
+ Petiole long, more than 10 mm, longest up to 30 mm   (11)
10 (9) Leaf blade widely obovate or rarely orbicular, 1.5-4 cm; petiole 1-5 mm; peduncle slender, 4-6.5 mm; fruit 6-7 mm wide.   15 C. cuneatus
+ Leaf blade oblanceolate, rarely widely oblanceolate, 6.5-12.5 cm; petiole 4-9 mm; peduncle subsessile, only ca. 2 mm; fruit 7.5-8.5 mm wide.   16 C. oblanceifolius
11 (9) Fruit small, 4-5 mm wide; seeds small, ca. 2.5 mm.   17 C. homaliifolius
+ Fruit large, 6.5-10 mm wide; seeds large, 3-5 mm   (12)
12 (11) Cymes 3-flowered; peduncle short, 2-5 mm; pedicels jointed distally.   18 C. aculeatus
+ Cymes 3-14-flowered; peduncle long, 5-20 mm; pedicels jointed below middle or near base   (13)
13 (12) Leaf blade obovate or obovate-elliptic; cymes 7-14-flowered; young branchlets, peduncles, and pedicels densely brown hirsute.   19 C. hirsutus
+ Leaves oblong or elliptic; cymes 3-7-flowered; young branchlets, peduncles, and pedicels with very short brown or yellowish white stiff hairs   (14)
14 (13) Young branchlets, peduncles, and pedicels with dense and very short brown stiff hairs; leaf blade widely elliptic to orbicular; secondary veins in 3 or 4 pairs.   20 C. kusanoi
+ Young branchlets, peduncles, and pedicels with very short yellowish white stiff hairs; leaf blade rectangular-elliptic, rarely rectangular-obovate; secondary veins in 5-7 pairs.   21 C. stylosus
15 (7) Leaf blade abaxially pallid   (16)
+ Leaf blade same color on both surfaces   (19)
16 (15) Leaf blade narrowly lanceolate.   3 C. franchetianus
+ Leaf blade broad, elliptic to broadly lanceolate or obovate-lanceolate   (17)
17 (16) Petiole short, 8-12 mm; seeds elliptic.   4 C. glaucophyllus
+ Petiole long, 12-20 mm; seeds convex or slightly crescentiform   (18)
18 (17) Terminal inflorescence long, 7-10 cm; leaf blade small, ovate or rectangular-elliptic, 6-9.5 × 2.5-5.5 cm, base widely cuneate; fruit stalk long, 10-25 mm.   5 C. hypoleucus
+ Terminal inflorescence short, 3-7 cm; leaf blade large, widely ovate, widely ovate-elliptic or orbicular, 6-13.5 × 3.5-9.5 cm, base widely rounded; fruit stalk short, 5-10 mm.   6 C. hypoleucoides
19 (15) Veinlets obviously prominent and cancellate netted; leaf blade abaxially pubescent along veins.   7 C. rugosus
+ Veinlets not cancellate netted; leaf blade glabrous, or sometimes sparsely with short hair along veins   (20)
20 (19) Terminal inflorescences long, 6-18 cm; valves adaxially maculate, macula small, brown.   8 C. vaniotii
+ Terminal inflorescence short, generally 1-6 cm (C. hookeri: sometimes up to 9 cm); valves without macula   (21)
21 (20) Winter buds large, 5-12 mm; fruit large, 10-12 mm wide; filament sometimes with papillate hairs.   9 C. gemmatus
+ Winter buds small, 1-3 mm; fruit small, 5.5-10 mm wide; filament smooth   (22)
22 (21) Petiole 2-8 mm; leaf blade up to 9 cm, elliptic   (23)
+ Petiole usually more than 10 mm, longest up to 20 mm; leaf blade up to 13 cm, oblong, ovate, or nearly rounded   (24)
23 (22) Leaf blade glabrous; pedicels jointed above middle.   10 C. punctatus
+ Leaf blade slightly pubescent along veins abaxially; pedicels jointed at or below middle.   11 C. rosthornianus
24 (22) Terminal inflorescence long, 3-9 cm; pedicels jointed at or above middle; capsule 6-7 mm wide.   12 C. hookeri
+ Terminal inflorescence short, 1-3 cm; pedicels jointed below middle or near base; capsule 8-10 mm wide.   13 C. orbiculatus

  • List of lower taxa


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