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Key to families | Table of families and genera
Indexes to all accepted names and synonyms:
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Tree, shrub, [woody vine]. Leaf: opposite [alternate], generally palmately or ternately [pinnately] lobed to compound, deciduous, petioled; stipules 0. Inflorescence: umbel, panicle, or pendent raceme, axillary or terminal. Flower: unisexual or bisexual, radial or ± bilateral; sepals (4)5, free or fused; petals 0, 4, or 5(6); prominent disk between petals and stamens; stamens 5–12, free; ovary superior, chambers 2–3, each 2-ovuled, style short or 0, stigmas 2(3), linear, or 1, unlobed. Fruit: 2(3) 1-seeded mericarps, conspicuously winged, or generally leathery, generally 1[many]-seeded capsule [berry, nut, drupe].
150 genera, 1500 species: ± worldwide. Acer traditionally placed in Aceraceae, Aesculus in Hippocastanaceae. Cupaniopsis anacardioides (A. Rich.) Radlk. possibly naturalizing in southern California. —Scientific Editors: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Unabridged references: [Harrington, M.G., K.J. Edwards, S.A. Johnson, M.W. Chase, & P.A. Gadek. 2005. Phylogenetic inference in Sapindaceae sensu lato using plastid matK and rbcL DNA sequences. Syst Bot 30: 366–382.]
Unabridged note: Acer and Aesculus have traditionally been placed in small families (Aceraceae and Hippocastanaceae, respectively). However, virtually all the traits considered characteristic of these two small families are also found in the closely related large family Sapindaceae, and it seems more reasonable to emphasize the close relationship of the whole group by treating it as a single family, rather than maintaining two small segregate families that differ from Sapindaceae in virtually nothing except opposite leaves (Harrington et al. 2005).
Key to Sapindaceae
Large shrub or tree. Leaf: palmate, leaflets 5–7. Flower: petals 4, >> sepals. Fruit: capsule leathery. Seed: 1, large.
± 15 species: northern hemisphere. (Latin name for a sp. of oak)
Plant 4–12 m, broad, rounded. Leaf: leaflets 5–7, 6–17 cm, lance-oblong, finely serrate, acute to acuminate; petiole 1–12 cm. Inflorescence: panicle-like, erect, 1–2 dm, finely hairy; pedicel 3–10 mm. Flower: calyx 5–8 mm, 2-lobed; petals 12–18 mm, white to pale rose; stamens 5–7, 18–30 mm, exserted, anthers orange. Fruit: generally 1 at inflorescence tip, occasionally 2–9, 5–8 cm diam. Seed: generally 1, 2–5 cm, glossy brown.
2n=40. Dry slopes, canyons, borders of streams; < 1700 m. c&s Northwestern California, s Cascade Range, Sierra Nevada Foothills, Tehachapi Mountain Area, Great Central Valley (scattered near foothills), n&c Central Western California, sw Mojave Desert; southwestern Oregon. All parts TOXIC. Native Americans used ground seed as fish poison; nectar and pollen TOXIC to honeybees. Generally deciduous Jun–Feb. May–Jun [Online Interchange]
Previous taxon: Aesculus
Next taxon: Sarcobataceae
Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Mar 11 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2012. Aesculus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=12026, accessed on Mar 11 2014
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© 1977 Lee Dittmann
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