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Family Alliaceae

Synonyms: Gilliesiaceae APNI*
Agapanthaceae APNI*

Description: Perennial herbs, with tunicated bulbs enclosed by membranous rather than fibrous scales.

Leaves basal, linear, sheathing scape to varying heights, lamina with numerous longitudinal veins; stipules absent.

Inflorescence scapose, terminal, solitary or umbellate, 1–many-flowered; flowers initially enclosed in a spathe of 1–several scarious, free or united bracts. Flowers bisexual, actinomorphic, pedicellate. Tepals 6, in 2 whorls, persistent in fruit. Stamens usually 6; filaments filiform, linear or broadened, all simple or those opposite inner segments 3-fid; anthers epipeltate, versatile, introrse, dehiscing by longitudinal slits. Ovary superior, 3-locular; placentation axile; stigma capitate.

Fruit a loculicidal capsule; seeds in varying numbers, angled or subglobose, black, unwinged.

Distribution and occurrence: World: 30 genera, c. 700 species, Northern Hemisphere, Amer, & Africa. Australia: 4 genera, 11 species, N.S.W., Vic., Tas., S.A., W.A.

External links:
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Amaryllidaceae, Order: Asparagales)

These genera have often been included in the Liliaceae s. lat. Cultivated plants include species of Allium, Agapanthus and Tulbaghia.

Text by D. C. Godden
Taxon concept:

Taxa not yet included in identification key

 Key to the genera 
1Inflorescence an umbel; perianth usually less than 15 mm long, tepals free or slightly united at base2
Flower solitary; perianth usually more than 20 mm long, tepals fused into a tube c. 15 mm longIpheion
2Plants with an onion- or garlic-like odour when crushed; ovules usually 2 per loculus; style gynobasicAllium
Plants with little or no onion- or garlic-like odour when crushed; ovules usually 4–12 per loculus; style terminal
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