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Simaroubaceae

KAMAL A. MALIK


Department of Botany, University of Karachi, Karachi-32.

Trees or shrubs, usually with bitter bark. Leaves usually alternate or rarely opposite, often pinnate rarely simple, exstipulate or stipules deciduous and minute. Inflorescence axillary, racemose, paniculate or cymose, sometimes spicate. Flowers uni- or bisexual or functionally bisexual, small, actinomorphic, bracteolate. Calyx 3-5-lobed or parted, valvate or imbricate. Petals free, 3-6, rarely absent, valvate or imbricate, hypogynous. Disc of various shapes, annular, cupular, elongated, entire or lobed, rarely absent. Stamens inserted at the base of the disc, as many as petals, often provided with a scale at the base of the filament. Carpels (1-) 2-5 (-7), free or connate with free or connate styles and or stigmas; ovules 1-2, axile, anatropous or amphitropous. Fruit drupaceous, capsular or samaroid; when carpels free as many, 1-(or rarely 2-) -seeded fruits, as carpels or less. when carpels connate fruit 2-5-celled with 1 seed per cell.

The family is closely allied to Rutaceae, not only morphologically (differing mainly in the absence of oil glands and in the marked tendency to unisexuality in the flowers) but also biochemically (Nooteboom, Blumea 14: 309. 1966).

A family of 20 genera and 120 species, distributed in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Represented in Pakistan by 3 genera and 4 species.

Acknowledgements: We are grateful to Dr. H.P. Nooteboom (Rijksherbarium, Leiden) and Mr. I.C. Hedge (Royal Botanic Garden, Edinburgh) for kindly going through the manuscript and offering suggestions for its improvement. We are also thankful to Dr. N.K.B. Robson for his help in typification. The financial assistance received from United States Department of Agriculture under P.L. 480 with the coordination of the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Islamabad, is thankfully acknowledged.


1 Leaves simple, small   3 Suriana
+ Leaves compound, large   (2)
       
2 (1) Stipules present but often inconspicuous. Leaflets c. symmetric, eglandular. Stamens 4(-5). Fruit a drupe   2 Picrasma
+ Stipules absent. Leaflets oblique, with glands on the underside at the teeth. Stamens 10, in female flowers often reduced to absent. Fruit a samara   1 Ailanthus

Lower Taxa


 

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