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Key to families | Table of families and genera
Indexes to all accepted names and synonyms:
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[Subshrub] shrub, tree, trunk bark smooth or scaly; glands 0 or embedded in epidermis. Leaf: opposite or alternate, persistent, generally glandular when young. Inflorescence: generally axillary, raceme, panicle, cyme, or flowers 1. Flower: generally bisexual, parts in 4s, 5s, generally ± white; hypanthium exceeding ovary or not; stamens generally many; ovary [rarely superior to] inferior, 2–5(18)-chambered; placentas axillary, just below top, or basal, ovules few to many, generally in 2–many series. Fruit: berry, capsule, nut. Seed: 1–many; coat membranous to ± leathery or hard, bony; embryo starchy or oily (of great taxonomic importance).
100 genera, ± 3500 species: many species tropical America, Australasia, fewer Africa, southern Asia; economically important for timber (Eucalyptus), spices (Syzygium aromaticum (L.) Merr. & L.M. Perry, cloves; Pimenta dioica (L.) Merr., allspice), edible fruits (Psidium guajava L., guava; Acca sellowiana (O. Berg) Burret, pineapple guava), many orns (Eucalyptus, Melaleuca, several other genera). [McVaugh 1968 Taxon 17:354–418] Apparently of Gondwanan origins; tropics, subtropics, Mediterranean climates. Chamelaucium uncinatum Schauer, Luma apiculata (DC.) Burret, Melaleuca citrina (Curtis) Dum.Cours., Myrtus communis L., Syzygium australe (Link) B. Hyland are waifs. —Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti.
Unabridged references: [McVaugh 1968 Taxon 17:354–418; Wilson et al. 2005 Plant Syst Evol 251:3–19]
Key to Myrtaceae
Shrub, small tree. Stem: erect or leaning; bark shed in small flakes; trunk rough. Leaf: generally opposite. Inflorescence: flowers 1 in axils, pedicelled. Flower: hypanthium ± obconic; calyx lobes, petals 5, free; stamens many; ovary chambers 2–3; style < 1 cm. Fruit: berry, < 1 cm, blue-purple. Seed: ± flattened, snailshell-like, outer rim of seed coat shiny, hard, only a few cells thick, easily broken; central portion of seed often soft; embryo a C-shaped cylinder, ± 2 × cotyledons in length.
1 (perhaps 2) species: Mediterranean. (Ancient Greek name)
Stem: < 6 m, trunk ± contorted, gray to orange-brown. Leaf: 0.8–4.5, ovate or lanceolate to elliptic, acute to acuminate, thinly leathery, dark green adaxially. Flower: < 2.5 cm wide; petals round to ovate, white, spreading, adaxially concave; stamens forming a dense ring, ± = petals. Fruit: < 12 mm wide.
Disturbed wet areas; 740 m. Inner North Coast Ranges; native to Mediterranean, naturalized Louisiana, Texas, potentially escaping in humid, non-freezing areas in North America. Often cultivated in California. [Online Interchange]
Previous taxon: Myrtus
Next taxon: Syzygium
Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2013. Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/IJM.html, accessed on Sep 17 2014
Citation for this treatment: [Author of taxon treatment] 2013. Myrtus, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_IJM.pl?tid=77266, accessed on Sep 17 2014
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© 2006 Luigi Rignanese
|Geographic subdivisions indicated for the distribution of Myrtus communis|| Markers link to CCH specimen records. If the markers are obscured, reload the page [or change window size and reload]. Yellow markers indicate records that may provide evidence for eFlora range revision or may have georeferencing or identification issues.
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(Note: any qualifiers in the taxon distribution description, such as 'northern', 'southern', 'adjacent' etc., are not reflected in the map above, and in some cases indication of a taxon in a subdivision is based on a single collection or author-verified occurence).
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