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Published In: Genera Plantarum 51. 1789. (4 Aug 1789) (Gen. Pl.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 6/2/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 6/3/2011)
Contributor Text: S. I. ALI
Contributor Institution: Department of Botany, University of Karachi, Karachi-75270, Pakistan
General/Distribution: A family comprising of 15 genera and c. 780 species, widely distributed in arid and mesic tropical, subtropical and temperate regions of the Old World, main center being in Southern Africa; represented in Pakistan by 3 genera and 11 species.
Comment/Acknowledgements: Acknowledgement: We are grateful to the Directors/ Curators of the following herbaria for herbarium and library facilities and for sending the specimens on loan: BM, E, K, LINN and RAW. We gratefully acknowledge financial support for this publication from the Andrew Mellon Foundation and National Science Foundation (DEB 0103783), Washington, U.S.A. obtained through the Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, U.S.A. We are grateful to Professor Peter H. Raven of the Missouri Botanical Garden for his assistance in securing the support. Grateful thanks are due to Professor Pirzada Qasim Raza Siddiqui, Vice-Chancellor, University of Karachi and Professor Shahid Shaukat, Chairman, Department of Botany, University of Karachi for providing working facilities to the project and for their understanding and encouragement.

This issue is funded in part by the US National Science Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.


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Herbs, often succulent, small to medium sized or sometimes large trees with leaves arranged in terminal rosettes. Roots terete, slightly succulent, sometimes fusiform. Leaves lanceolate, spiral or distichous, linear, acuminate, terete, often succulent. Inflorescence a raceme or panicle, pedunculate; flowers actinomorphic or rarely zygomorphic, hypogynous, tepals 3 +3, red, orange, yellow or white, gamo or polyphyllous. Stamens 3 + 3, filaments free; anthers dorsifixed, rarely basifixed (Eremurus). Pistil tricarpellary, syncarpous, trilocular, axile placentation, 2-many ovules per locule, septal nectaries present; style distinct, stigma minute. Fruit a dehiscent capsule, rarely berry-like. Seeds completely covered by aril, sometimes winged, endosperm present.

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1 Leaves not as above (2)
+ Leaves distinctly succulent, often margined with prickly teeth 1 Aloe
2 (1) Pedicels not articulated below the flower. Stamens exceeding the tepals, filaments not dilated towards the base, anthers basifixed 3 Eremurus
+ Pedicels articulated below the flower. Stamens shorter than the tepals, filaments expanded at the base, anthers dorsifixed 2 Asphodelus
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