Common Name: GOURD FAMILY
Habit: Annual, perennial herb; hairs often hard from calcium deposits; generally monoecious. Stem: trailing or climbing, 1--many; tendril generally 1 per node, often branched. Leaf: generally simple, alternate, generally palmate-lobed and -veined, petioled; stipules 0. Inflorescence: at nodes; staminate flowers in racemes, panicles, small clusters, (or 1); pistillate flowers generally 1. Flower: unisexual [bisexual], radial; hypanthium > ovary; calyx generally 5-lobed (or +- 0); corolla rotate to cup- or bell-shaped, generally 5-lobed; stamens 3--5 (or +- 1--3 from fusion), anthers twisted together, often > filaments; ovary +- inferior, chambers 3--5, placentas parietal, styles 1--3, stigmas generally lobed, large. Fruit: berry, drying or not, or capsule, irregularly dehiscent, often gourd- or melon-like. Seed: 1--many.
Genera In Family: 100 genera, 700 species: especially tropics; some cultivated (Citrullus, watermelon; Cucumis, cucumber; Cucurbita, gourd, pumpkin, squash; Luffa, loofah; Sechium, chayote). Note: Several cultivated species included Bryonia dioica reported as waifs in California (Howell 1958 Wasmann J Biol 16:1--157), but none recently.
eFlora Treatment Author: John M. Miller & Robert L. Schlising
Scientific Editor: Douglas H. Goldman, Bruce G. Baldwin.