1. Rhizophora Linn., Sp. Pl. 443. 1753. Gen. Pl. ed. 5. 202. 1754; Ding Hou in van Steenis, Fl. Males. 1. (5); 448. 1958.
Medium sized trees or shrubs with branched stilt roots from lower stem. Leaves elliptic, opposite decussate, leathery, mostly black dotted beneath, glabrous, mucronate at tip; stipules lanceolate, ± red when young. Inflorescence pedunculate, usually biparous or simple cyme. Flowers c. 1 cm long with connate, paired and persistent cup-shaped bracteoles, perigynous. Sepals 4, basally united into a short tube, lobes large, leathery, accrescent, enlarged and reflexed in fruit. Petals as many as sepals, lanceolate, entire, caducous, inserted below the disc. Stamens 8-12, inserted on margins of crenulate disc, filaments shorter than the narrowly oblong, basifixed triquetrous multilocellate anthers, dehiscing by a large ventral valve. Ovary bicarpellary, syncarpous, half-inferior, protruding beyond hypanthium, bilocular, each locule with a pair of pendulous ovules; style inconspicuous, upto 6 mm long, with simple or obscurely 2-lobed stigma. Fruit ovoid to obpyriform, mostly 1-seeded, indehiscent, rough or granular surfaced berry. Seeds viviparous, embryo non-endospermic, cotyledons fused into a fleshy mass continuous with but broken off from the terete hy¬pocotyl which perforates fruit apex.
A small genus of c. 7 species, distributed in tropical coastal swamps and along tidal streams or deltas.