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Pakistan | Family List | Rhamnaceae

6. Rhamnus Linn., Sp. Pl. ed. 1:193. 1753. Benth. & Hook. f., Gen. Pl. 1:377. 1862; Lawson in Hook. f., Fl. Brit. Ind. 1:638. 1875; Talbot, For. Fl. Bomb. Pres. Sind 300: 1911; Cooke, Fl. Pres. Bomb. 1:259. 1902; Bamber, Pl. Punj. 10. 1916; Parker, For. Fl. Punj. ed. 2, 87. 1921; Collett, Fl. Simi. 1921; Grubov in Shishkin, Fl. URSS 14: 645. 1949; Davis, Fl. Turk. 2:526. 1966; Browicz & Zielinski in Rech. f., Fl. Ir. 125. 14. 1977.


Deciduous or evergreeen shrubs or small trees, usually much branched, thorny or unarmed. Leaves mostly alternate, rarely opposite, entire, or crenate, petiolate, stipules small deciduous. Inflorescence of axillary fascicles, umbel or simple or branched racemes. Flowers 4-5 merous, unisexual, or hermaphrodite, small, greenish or yellowish to whitish in colour, sessile or pedunculate. Calyx 4-5 fid, tube urceolate, lobes keeled within. Petals 4-5, inserted at the edge of the disc, absent or rarely cucullate or flat. Disc thin and lining the calyx tube only. Stamens 4-5, filaments very short. Style 2-4-fid or undivided, ovary free, 3-4 celled. Fruit a drupe, fleshy or dry, pyrenes, 2-4 celled, dehescent or indehescent, 1-seeded, oblong or globose.

A fairly large genus of 160 species, cosmopolitan in distribution. Represented in Pakistan by 6 species only.

Doubtful Species

Rhamnus minuta Grubov in Bot. Mat. Gerb. Inst. An SSSR. 12. cum tab. 1949.

Based on one specimen collected from Chitral, Wendelbo Nytt. Mag. Bot. 1:45. 1952) and R.R. Stewart (l.c.) have reported this species. I have neither seen this specimen nor any other authentic specimen of this taxon from Pakistan. Furthermore this species is closely related to R. prostrate Jacq. ex Parker which is commonly found in Chitral, therefore this record may have been based on misidentification.

Excluded Species

1. Rhamnus punctata Boiss., l.c.

2. Rhamnus spathulifolia Fisch. & Mey., Ind. Gen. Hort. Petrop. 4:46. 1835.

Blatter & Hallberg (1919) identified the specimens collected by Hotson from Baluchistan as Rhamnus punctata Boiss. and R. spathulifolia Fisch. & Mey. We have not seen any authentic specimens of these species.

1 Leaves 7-15 cm long with 8-10 pairs of lateral nerves   (2)
+ Leaves 1-6 cm long with 3-4 pairs of lateral nerves   (3)
2 (1) Leaves sub-coriaceous, minutely velvety tomentose beneath with older leaves pubescent on the nerves. Pedicel in fruit 1-2.5 mm long   1 Rhamnus triquetra
+ Leaves membranous, entirely glabrous, or bearded at the axil of the nerves, pubescent when young. Pedicel in fruit c. 7-9 cm long   2 Rhamnus purpurea
3 (1) Leaves opposite or sub-opposite, acuminate   3 Rhamnus virgata
+ Leaves alternate or in clusters, acute or obtuse   (4)
4 (3) Dwarf decumbent or prostrate shrub   (5)
+ Erect shrub or trees   4 Rhamnus pentapomica
5 (4) Leaves entire, fruit globose   5 Rhamnus persica
+ Leaves denticulate or crenate. Fruit ovoid   6 Rhamnus prostrata

Lower Taxa

Related Synonym(s):


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