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Erythropalum Bl.


Description from Flora of China

Scandent shrubs or lianas, with axillary tendrils. Branchlets unarmed. Leaves alternate; leaf blade slightly peltate, palmately 3-5-veined. Inflorescences a dichotomous cyme. Calyx cupular, 4- or 5-dentate, accrescent and covering fruit. Petals 5, ovate-triangular, bases coherent. Stamens 5, inserted at base of petals; filaments short; anthers ovoid. Disk cupular, 5-crenate. Ovary inferior, 1-loculed; placenta central, free; ovules 2 or 3. Style conic; stigma 3-lobed. Drupe ellipsoid, crowned by persistent calyx, splitting into 3-5 1-seeded segments when mature.

Erythropalum has sometimes been placed in a distinct family, the Erythropalaceae, because of its very distinctive tendrils, large and lax inflorescences, and dehiscent fruit, but it also has the free, central placentation characteristic of the Olacaceae, and molecular data do not seem to support such a separation.

One species: S and SE Asia.


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