Description: Herbs, shrubs, climbers or leafless parasites, glabrous or pubescent.
Leaves alternate, margins entire, lobed or deeply divided.
Inflorescence mainly an axillary cyme, 1 to many-flowered, bracteolate. Flowers actinomorphic, rarely slightly zygomorphic, bisexual, 5-merous or rarely 3 or 4-merous. Sepals usually free. Corolla tubular, funnel-shaped, campanulate, rarely rotate or trumpet-shaped. Stamens 5, fused to the corolla, alternating with corolla lobes; anthers 2-locular, opening by longitudinal slits. Disc usually present. Ovary superior, 1- or 2-, rarely 3- or 4-locular; ovules 2, rarely 1 in each loculus.
Fruit a capsule, dehiscing by valves or circumsciss, rarely fleshy or indehiscent.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 55 genera, c. 1650 species, cosmopolitan, mainly tropical and subtropical regions. Australia: 20 genera, c. 130 species, all States.
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Convolvulaceae, Order: Solanales)
The family includes a number of species with edible starchy tubers, including the sweet potato and native species eaten by Aborigines. Some are toxic to stock, while a few are weeds, mainly of tropical crops. Some exotic species such as the morning glories (Ipomoea species) are widely cultivated for their showy flowers and have become naturalized. The Cuscutaceae (1 gen., c. 170 spp.) are sometimes recognized as a separate family.
Text by R. W. Johnson
| ||Key to the genera|| |
|1||Yellow, brown or reddish, leafless parasitic twiners||Cuscuta|
|Green leafy plants, not parasitic on other plants||2|
|2||Ovary distinctly 2-lobed, styles 2, inserted between the lobes||Dichondra|
|Ovary entire, style or styles terminal|
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|3||Sepals united, with lobes shorter than the tube||Wilsonia|
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|4||Styles 2, free or united for up to half their length; hairs bifid||5|
|Style 1; hairs simple or bifid|
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|5||Styles united at the base||Bonamia|
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|6||Styles forked with linear stigmas; flowers axillary||Evolvulus|
|Styles entire with capitate stigmas; flowers terminal|
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|7||Capsule small, indehiscent, 1-seeded; sepals at fruiting enlarged, spreading, scarious and reticulate; hairs bifid||Duperreya|
|Capsule and fruiting sepals not as above; hairs simple|
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|8||Stigma capitate or biglobose||Ipomoea|
|Stigma lobed, lobes linear or oblong|
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|9||Stigmatic lobes 2||10|
|Stigmatic lobes 4 or more|
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|10||Bracteoles large, subtending and more or less enclosing the calyx||Calystegia|
|Bracteoles small, distant from the calyx|
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