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Smithia Aiton


Description from Flora of China

Damapana Adanson.

Herbs or shrublets. Stems herbaceous or often slightly woody, bristly to glabrescent. Stipules spurred below point of insertion, scarious, persistent, basal portion 1- or 2-auriculate. Leaves opposite, paripinnate, subsessile, few to 12-foliolate, sensitive; rachis often ending in a spine; leaflet blades usually linear-oblong, bristly on abaxial side and margins, apex mucronate. Inflorescences axil­lary, dense racemes or ± scorpioid cymes, sometimes reduced to a solitary flower; bracts stipule-shaped, scarious, striate, caducous. Flowers small. Bracteoles scarious, persistent. Hypanthium short, much reduced. Calyx membranous or scarious, persistent and often accrescent at fruit, 2-lipped, lips usually entire. Corolla white, purple, yellow, or blue, longer than calyx; standard orbicular to ob­long; wings and keel almost as long as standard; keel inflexed, lateral appendages nearly as long as claws, apex blunt. Stamens usually diadelphous (5+5); anthers uniform. Intrastaminal disk present. Ovary linear, with numerous ovules; style filiform, inflexed, persistent to fruit; stigma terminal, small. Legume a loment, plicate within calyx, shortly stipitate, with few to many articles. Seeds orbicular or reniform, compressed; hilum eccentric.

About 20 species: tropics of Asia and Africa; five species in China.


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