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Olacaceae Mirbel ex Candolle


Description from Flora of China

Shrubs, scandent shrubs, trees, or lianas, sometimes hemiparasitic, often glabrous. Lateral shoots sometimes with bud scales at base. Stipules absent. Leaves alternate, rarely opposite; petiole well developed; leaf blade simple, margin entire; veins usually pinnate, sometimes palmate and 3-5-veined. Inflorescences axillary, rarely also terminal, cymose, fasciculate, racemelike, spikelike, or umbellate, mostly small; bracts small and inconspicuous. Flowers usually bisexual, actinomorphic, 3-7-merous, sometimes heterostylous. Calyx small at anthesis, cupular, discoid, or lobed, sometimes accrescent to partly or wholly covering fruit, sometimes fused to fruit (in Schoepfia). Petals free or basally connate, valvate. Disk cuplike or annular, rarely free glands, sometimes accrescent and covering fruit apex (in Schoepfia). Stamens 3-15, rarely in part staminodes, epipetalous; anthers basi- or medi-fixed, usually 2-loculed, longitudinally dehiscent. Ovary usually superior, rarely semisuperior but sometimes apparently inferior through fusion with calyx, 2-5-loculed or semiloculed with apex of ovary 1-loculed; ovules solitary in each locule or semilocule, pendent from apex of free central placenta, usually anatropous, integuments 1 or 2. Style terminal, simple; stigma 2-5-lobed. Fruit a drupe, sometimes with an accrescent calyx. Seed solitary; testa thin; endosperm abundant; embryo small; cotyledons 2-4.

Between 23 and 27 genera and 180–250 species: tropical and warm-temperate regions worldwide; five genera (one endemic) and ten species (three endemic) in China.

(Authors: Qiu Huaxing (邱华兴 Chiu Hua-hsing, Kiu Hua-xing) ; Michael G. Gilbert)

  • Qiu Huaxing -- Department of Taxonomy, South China Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Wushan, Guangzhou, Guangdong 510650, People’s Republic of China.
  • Michael G. Gilbert -- Missouri Botanical Garden, c/o Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 3AE, England, United Kingdom.

    Ling Yeou-ruenn. 1988. Olacaceae. In: Kiu Hua-shing & Ling Yeou-ruenn, eds., Fl. Reipubl. Popularis Sin. 24: 30–46.

  • Lower Taxa


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