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Genus Caesalpinia Family Fabaceae
Subfamily Caesalpinioideae

Description: Shrubs, vines or scramblers, deciduous, unarmed or with recurved prickles.

Leaves alternate, bipinnate, prickles often scattered along leaf and pinnae rachises; stipules various.

Inflorescences axillary or terminal racemes or panicles. Flowers usually bisexual. Sepals 5, lowest outside and often larger than the rest. Petals 5, subequal or uppermost smaller. Stamens 10, free, in 2 whorls. Ovary sessile or shortly stipitate; ovules 1–10; style subulate; stigma lobed.

Pod ± dehiscent; seeds transverse.


Photo © ANBG

Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 100 species, pantropical. Australia: 6 species (1 species endemic), Qld, N.S.W., N.T., W.A.

Text by B. Wiecek & S. McCune
Taxon concept:

Taxa not yet included in identification key
Caesalpinia major

 Key to the species 
1Older stems with prominent wide longitudinal flanges of corkCaesalpinia subtropica
Stems without corky flanges2
2Spines and prickles absent; filaments more than 5 cm longCaesalpinia gilliesii
Spines or prickles present; filaments less than 2 cm long
                       Back to 1
3
3Pinnules more than 7 mm wide; pods less than 2 times as long as broad, 1–3-seeded4
Pinnules less than 7 mm wide; pods more than 3 times as long as broad, 5–8-seeded
                       Back to 2
Caesalpinia decapetala
4Leaves with prickles only on leaf rachis and more or less confined to base of pinnae pairs; inflorescences unarmed; pods not spinose, wing along upper marginCaesalpinia scortechinii
Leaves with prickles scattered along leaf and pinnae rachises; inflorescences prickly; pods with numerous bristly spines, not winged
                       Back to 3
Caesalpinia bonduc

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