PlantNET Home PlantNET Home | Search NSW Flora | Contact Us  
FloraOnline
Introduction
Plant Name Search
Index Search
Spatial Search
Identification Keys
Classification
Glossary
HerbLink (Type Images)
WeedAlert
Other PlantNET Sites
Other Data Sources
NEW SOUTH WALES FLORA ONLINE Printable Page

Family Urticaceae

Description: Herbs, shrubs or soft-wooded trees, rarely climbers; monoecious, dioecious, or polygamous; frequently with specialized stinging hairs.

Leaves opposite or alternate, simple; stipules present.

Inflorescences usually axillary, basically cymose, paniculate or spicate or flowers in head-like clusters. Flowers actinomorphic or nearly so, unisexual, small, individually inconspicuous. Male flowers with 4 or 5 sepals and as many stamens, rarely only 1, anthers 2-locular, dehiscing by longitudinal slits; sterile ovary often present. Female flowers with 0, 4 or 5 sepals; scale-like staminodes sometimes present; ovary superior, 1-locular with a single style.

Fruit often laterally compressed, mostly an achene, rarely drupaceous.


Distribution and occurrence: World: 45 genera, c. 550 species, widespread, chiefly tropical & temperate regions. Australia: 11 genera, 20 species, all States, chiefly Qld & N.S.W.

External links:
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Urticaceae, Order: Rosales)
Wikipedia

The family is of little economic importance except for Boehmeria nivea (L.) Gaudich. that produces ramie fibre, and some herbaceous species that are cultivated as ornamentals.

Text by G. J. Harden
Taxon concept:

 Key to the genera 
1Shrubs or trees2
Herbs, sometimes woody at base5
2Leaves oppositeBoehmeria
Leaves alternate
                       Back to 1
3
3Leaf lamina peltate; introduced treeCecropia
Leaf lamina not peltate, petiole attached to base of lamina
                       Back to 2
4
4Leaves green on both surfaces; stinging hairs present on all parts of plant, though sometimes sparseDendrocnide
Leaves whitish grey below; stinging hairs absent
                       Back to 3
Pipturus
5Leaves alternate6
Leaves opposite
                       Back to 1
9
6Leaves toothed or crenate7
Leaves entire
                       Back to 5
8
7Leaves with lamina asymmetric, curved, sessile or almost soElatostema
Leaves with lamina symmetric, petiole c. as long as the lamina
                       Back to 6
Australina
8Leaves more than 10 mm longParietaria
Leaves less than 5 mm long
                       Back to 6
Soleirolia
9Leaves more than 10 mm long, toothed; stinging hairs presentUrtica
Leaves less than 5 mm long, entire; stinging hairs absent
                       Back to 5
Pilea

  Privacy | Copyright | Disclaimer | About PlantNET | Cite PlantNET