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Family Loranthaceae

Description: Hemiparasitic, terrestrial, root-parasitic shrubs or trees, or aerial, stem-parasitic shrubs.

Leaves mostly opposite.

Inflorescence a lateral umbel or raceme, with the inflorescence unit in many genera a 3-flowered dichasium (triad). Flowers usually actinomorphic or slightly zygomorphic, bisexual or rarely unisexual, mostly 4–6-merous. Calyx lobed or truncate, limb at apex of inferior ovary. Corolla free or fused, valvate, petaloid, often with a small fringe (the calyculus) below the perianth. Stamens the same number as and opposite to and fused to the petals; anthers mostly basifixed, sometimes dorsifixed and versatile. Ovary inferior, 1–many-locular, without developed ovules, producing several egg cells in the ± solid ovary tissue.

Fruit mostly succulent, berry-like, viscous layer outside vascular bundles; seed solitary.


Habitat
Photo J. Plaza

Flower
Photo J. Plaza

Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 65 genera, c. 900 species, cosmopolitan. Australia: 10 genera, 65 species, all States.

External links:
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Loranthaceae, Order: Santalales)
Wikipedia

Text by A. L. Quirico
Taxon concept:

 Key to the genera 
1Terrestrial shrubs, parasitic upon the roots of other plantsAtkinsonia
Parasitic shrubs on the branches of trees or shrubs2
2Inflorescences terminal (sometimes on short lateral stems and then seemingly axillary)Muellerina
Inflorescences otherwise
                       Back to 1
3
3Flowers in heads, enclosed in 2 enlarged foliaceous bracts fused at margins over buds during developmentDiplatia
Inflorescence various; flowers not enclosed in enlarged leafy bracts
                       Back to 2
4
4Petals free or very shortly fused at the base. Flowers arranged in an umbel of 1 to 3 triads or umbelsAmyema
Petals fused into a tube for the greater part of their length
                       Back to 3
5
5Leaves mostly alternate or scattered; inflorescence a raceme of single flowersDendrophthoe
Leaves opposite or clustered; inflorescence a simple umbel or a raceme of triads
                       Back to 4
6
6Corolla 5-merous, deeply split on one side, lobes and stamens reflexed to one sideBenthamina
Corolla 6-merous, lobes and stamens not reflexed to one side
                       Back to 5
7
7Runners present; corolla tube straight; inflorescence a raceme of triadsAmylotheca
Runners absent; corolla tube curved; inflorescence a simple umbel
                       Back to 6
Lysiana

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