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Genus Dodonaea Family Sapindaceae

Synonyms: Dodonaea crucifolia I.Telford ined. APNI*
Distichostemon APNI*

Description: Shrubs or small trees, dioecious, monoecious or ploygamous; often resinous.

Leaves alternate, simple or pinnate, generally attenuate at the base, glabrous to hairy.

Inflorescences cymose. Flowers male, female or bisexual. Sepals 3–7, usually 4, free, sometimes persistent. Petals absent. Stamens 6–16, usually 8–10, in female flowers absent or rudimentary. Disc small. Ovary 2–6-carpellate, glabrous or sometimes pubescent, usually reflected in capsule, usually sticky; in male flowers rudimentary or absent.

Capsule 2–4-angled and usually prominently 2–4-winged, membranous or leathery, dehiscence usually by valves breaking away from the septa; aril mostly absent; testa covered with hyaline membrane.


Distribution and occurrence: World: 68 species, tropical & temperate Africa, Pacific, Australia. Australia: 61 species (59 species endemic), all States.

Key adapted from West (1985).

Text by P. G. Wilson & J. A. Scott
Taxon concept:

Taxa not yet included in identification key
Dodonaea stenozyga

 Key to the species 
1Leaves simple or pinnatifid with lobes shorter than breadth of lamina (Dodonaea lobulata)2
Leaves compound, the leaflets longer than the breadth of the rachis23
2Capsule winged, the wings extending from capsule base to apex, usually prominent and more than 2 mm wide (less than 1 mm in Dodonaea procumbens)3
Capsule globose, not prominently winged, the appendage at capsule apex only, usually lobe-like or horn-like or sometimes absent, or rarely a wing to 1.5 mm wide
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20
3Capsule wings rounded, with their longest axis parallel to capsule axis, more or less equal in breadth from base to apex4
Capsule wings rounded or pointed, oblique with their longest axis perpendicular to the capsule axis, larger at capsule apex than at base
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17
4Leaves more or less filiform, cylindrical or narrow-linear, less than 2 mm wide, terete or 4-ribbed or channelled above or flat, margins entire5
Leaves never more or less filiform or cylindrical, flat, margins entire to regularly toothed or lobed, if linear then more than 2 mm wide and sinuate
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6
5Branchlets finely pubescent; leaves falcate, not rigid, 2.5–4 cm long, rarely to 5 cmDodonaea falcata
Branchlets glabrous; leaves straight, usually erect, often rigid, 4–10.5 cm long, or rarely as short as 3 cm
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Dodonaea viscosa
6Leaves sticky, shiny and glabrous, or pubescent7
Leaves not sticky, dull, glabrous
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14
7Leaves more than 10 mm wide8
Leaves less than 10 mm wide
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9
8Capsule greatly inflated, not readily dehiscent, the wings 1.5–4 mm wideDodonaea petiolaris
Capsule not inflated, dehiscent, the wings more than 4 mm wide
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Dodonaea viscosa
9Leaves usually less than 2.5 mm wide, linear, pinnatifid or irregularly 2–12-lobedDodonaea lobulata
Leaves usually more than 2.5 mm wide, oblong, angular-obovate to obovate, entire or irregularly toothed or lobed at apex
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10
10Leaves 5–9 mm wide11
Leaves 2–5 mm wide, or rarely to 8 mm wide
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12
11Erect shrub; capsules 11–28 mm wide, wings more than 2 mm wideDodonaea viscosa
Prostrate shrub; capsules 8–10.5 mm wide, wings 0.5 mm wide
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Dodonaea procumbens
12Leaves linear to oblong, decurrent at base; sepals not persistentDodonaea camfieldii
Leaves angular-obovate to obovate, not decurrent at base; sepals persistent
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13
13Leaves hirsute, petiolate, 3–6 mm long; capsule hirsute; inflorescences axillaryDodonaea hirsuta
Leaves glabrous, sessile, 5–18 mm long; capsule glabrous; inflorescences terminal
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Dodonaea peduncularis
14Leaves sessile, 0.8–3.5 cm long, apex obtuse or rounded, rarely mucronateDodonaea bursariifolia
Leaves petiolate, rarely subsessile, lamina 3–12 cm long, apex acuminate to obtuse
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15
15Leaves irregularly toothed, 6–12 mm wide; inflorescences a 3–6-flowered cyme, pedicels 2–2.5 mm longDodonaea serratifolia
Leaves entire or sinuate, 10–47 mm wide; inflorescences a terminal panicle, pedicels more than 4 mm long
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16
16Capsule mostly 16–19 mm long, wing coriaceous; leaves concolorousDodonaea lanceolata
Capsule mostly 11–14 mm long. wing membranous; leaves discolorous
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Dodonaea triquetra
17Leaves elliptic, 14–27 mm wide, with length:breadth ratio of less than 5:1Dodonaea rhombifolia
Leaves usually linear, lanceolate or oblanceolate, rarely narrow-elliptic, 1–13 mm wide, with length:breadth ratio of more than 5:1
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18
18Leaves linear, rigid, 1–2.5 mm wideDodonaea stenophylla
Leaves oblanceolate, linear or narrow-elliptic, 2–13 mm wide
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19
19All leaves simple, 5–13 mm wide; capsule 3–4-wingedDodonaea truncatiales
Leaves simple or irregularly pinnate with 1–10 leaflets, 2–5 mm wide; capsule 4-winged
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Dodonaea heteromorpha
20Petiole 7.5–14 mm long; capsule greatly inflated more than 15 long, more than 11.5 mm wideDodonaea petiolaris
Leaves sessile or petiole less than 3 mm long; capsule not inflated, less than 13 mm long, less than 11.5 mm wide
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21
21Leaves with apex obtuse or rounded, entire, glabrousDodonaea bursariifolia
Leaves with apex acute, usually regularly toothed or sometimes 3-toothed, pubescent
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22
22Leaves 6–30 mm wide; capsule 6–9 mm long, usually sparsely pubescent; appendages usually present, lobe-like, 1–2 mm wideDodonaea triangularis
Leaves 4–8.5 mm wide; capsule 11–13 mm long, glabrous; wings 0.5 mm wide
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Dodonaea procumbens
23Capsule lacking wingsDodonaea macrossanii
Capsule prominently winged
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24
24Capsule wings rounded, with their longest axis parallel to the capsule axis, more or less equal in breadth from base to apex; leaflets usually less than 12 mm long25
Capsule wings rounded or pointed, oblique, their longest axis perpendicular to the capsule axis, larger at capsule apex than the base; leaflets usually more than 12 mm long
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30
25Leaflets linear, less than 2 mm wideDodonaea sinuolata
Leaflets various shapes, mostly narrow- to broad-obovate, never linear or linear-oblanceolate, more than 2 mm wide
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26
26Leaflets with sunken glands near margin on upper surface27
Leaflets without sunken surface glands
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28
27Lateral leaflets less than 15Dodonaea boroniifolia
Lateral leaflets more than 15
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Dodonaea multijuga
28Petioles at least 6 mm longDodonaea sinuolata
Petioles less than 6 mm long
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29
29Leaves densely hirsute; lateral leaflets more than 8; sepals persistent in fruitDodonaea pinnata
Leaves pubescent; lateral leaflets less than 8; sepals not persistent
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Dodonaea microzyga
30Leaves usually simple, sometimes irregularly pinnate with 1–10 irregularly spaced leafletsDodonaea heteromorpha
Leaves imparipinnate with 6–15 pairs of leaflets
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Dodonaea megazyga

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