Description: Herbs or small shrubs, usually with succulent leaves and stems, chiefly annual.
Leaves usually simple, opposite or occasionally alternate; stipules absent. Flowers actinomorphic, bisexual, mostly 4- or 5-merous (range 3–12).
Inflorescences terminal, of several dichasia or rarely flowers solitary. Sepals usually 4 or 5, free or fused, persistent. Petals as many as sepals, free or fused, persistent. Stamens equal to or twice as many as petals, in 1 or rarely 2 whorls, hypogynous or slightly perigynous; anthers 2-locular, opening by longitudinal slits. Ovary superior, carpels as many as and opposite the petals, ± free or fused at base; ovules 1–many.
Fruits often a star-shaped cluster of follicles.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 30 genera, 900 species, cosmopolitan. Australia: 4 genera, c. 19 species, all States.
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Crassulaceae, Order: Saxifragales)
Text by J. Everett & E. H. Norris
| ||Key to the genera|| |
|1||Stamens as many as petals||Crassula|
|Stamens twice as many as petals||2|
|2||Petals free or fused only at base; leaves alternate||Sedum|
|Petals fused into a tube for half their length; leaves opposite|
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|4||Flowers erect or spreading; filaments fused to corolla tube at or above middle||Kalanchoe|
|Flowers pendent; filaments fused to corolla tube in lower third|
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