Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

 
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Jepson Interchange (more information)
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  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.

CELASTRACEAE

STAFF-TREE FAMILY

Barry A. Prigge

Shrub (sometimes climbing), tree, sometimes thorny, generally glabrous
Leaves simple, opposite or alternate, ephemeral to persistent, subsessile or petioled; veins pinnate
Inflorescence: cluster, cyme, raceme, panicle, or flower solitary, axillary or terminal, bracted
Flower generally bisexual, radial, small; hypanthium ± cup-shaped; sepals 4–5; petals (0)4–5, free; stamens 4–5, alternate petals, attached below or to rim of disk; ovary superior or ± embedded in disk, 2–5-chambered, placentas axile or basal, style generally 1, short, stigma ± head-like, 2–5-lobed
Fruit: capsule, winged achene, berry, drupe, or nutlet, often 1-chambered
Seed generally 1 per chamber, arilled
Genera in family: 50 genera, 800 species: worldwide, especially se Asia; some ornamental (Celastrus, Euonymus, Maytenus,, Paxistima )
Reference: [Brizicky 1964 J Arnold Arbor 45:206–234]

MORTONIA

Shrub, erect, scabrous
Leaves alternate, persistent, ascending, leathery, entire; margin generally thicker
Inflorescence: panicle, terminal; flowers many
Flower: parts in 5's; hypanthium obconic; petals white; disk fused to hypanthium except at top, fleshy, ± white, becoming red-purple; ovary superior, narrowly ovoid, stigma lobes 5, slender, spreading
Fruit: nutlets 5, oblong-cylindric, light brown
Seed 1 per nutlet, straw-colored, very difficult to separate from nutlet; aril 0
Species in genus: 5 species: sw US, Mex
Etymology: (S.G. Morton, 19th century North America naturalist)

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