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Genus Datura Family Solanaceae

Description: Summer-growing annual herbs, glabrous or hairy with glandular or simple, non-glandular hairs.

Leaves alternate, simple, margins entire or lobed, petiolate.

Flowers solitary in forks of branches, bisexual, actinomorphic. Calyx tubular; lobes 3–9 but usually 5; base persistent in fruit. Corolla usually funnel-shaped or trumpet-shaped, white or variously coloured; limb shortly 5-lobed or appearing 10-lobed. Stamens usually 5, equal, inserted in lower half of corolla tube. Anthers 2-locular, basifixed, dehiscing by longitudinal slits. Ovary 2-locular, or falsely 4-locular in basal half; stigma saddle-shaped.

Fruit a 2–4-locular, spiny or tuberculate capsule, opening regularly or irregularly from apex.


Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 10 species, Central & South America, China, Asia & northern Africa. Australia: 6 species (1 species native, 5 species naturalized), all States.

Text by B. J. Conn
Taxon concept:

 Key to the species 
1Leaves lobed; lobes usually toothed or sinuate; capsule erect; seeds black or grey2
Leaves entire to sinuate or lobed; lobes entire; capsule deflexed; seeds brown or yellow3
2Flowers 6–10 cm long; capsule with more than 100 slender spines of various lengths, evenly distributedDatura stramonium
Flowers 4.5–6 cm long; capsule with 40–60 stout spines, spines towards base usually shorter
                       Back to 1
Datura ferox
3Plants glabrous, or sparsely hairy with non-glandular hairs4
Plants tomentose with non-glandular and/or glandular hairs
                       Back to 1
5
4Branches green; flowers 4.5–7 cm long; capsule with numerous sharp spines, longest 4–9 mm long.Datura leichhardtii
Branches tinged with purple; flowers 14–20 cm long; capsule with numerous short spines, blunt tubercle-like, all 2–5 mm long
                       Back to 3
Datura metel
5Hairs glandular, erect; stigma well below level of anthers; margin of corolla-limb angularDatura inoxia
Hairs mostly non-glandular and retrorse, some glandular and erect; stigma usually exserted well above anthers; margin of corolla limb rounded
                       Back to 3
Datura wrightii

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