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Family Escalloniaceae

Synonyms: Polyosmaceae APNI*
Eremosynaceae APNI*

Description: Trees or shrubs.

Leaves alternate or occasionally opposite or pseudowhorled, simple, margins entire or toothed, often with gland-tipped teeth; stipules absent.

Inflorescences terminal, mostly racemes, sometimes paniculate. Flowers actinomorphic, bisexual, 4–9-merous. Sepals fused in lower part. Petals free or apparently fused. Stamens 4–9; filaments free; anthers 2-locular, dehiscing by longitudinal slits, introrse. Disc present. Ovary superior or inferior, 1–2-locular; ovules numerous.

Fruit a capsule or berry.

Distribution and occurrence: World: 6 genera, 66 species, Central and South America, Malesia to New Zealand, Réunion. Australia: 3 genera, 3 species, Qld, N.S.W., Tas.

External links:
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Escalloniaceae, Order: Escalloniales)

Sometimes these genera have been placed in either the Grossulariaceae or the Saxifragaceae.

Escalloniaceae sens. lat. has been shown to include a number of unrelated groups, here separated as Argophyllaceae, Quintiniiaceae and Rousseaceae. Polyosma may also be better placed in its own family, but further study is needed.

Text by G. J. Harden (1992); edited KL Wilson (April 2010)
Taxon concept:

 Key to the genera 
1Leaves opposite or nearly so or in pseudowhorls; fruit a 1-seeded berry; [leaves 3–9 cm long, with acuminate to acute apex; calyx 4-toothed]Polyosma
1Leaves alternate, sometimes clustered at end of branches; fruit a many-seeded capsule2
2Leaves 15–50 cm long and at least 4 times long as wide, with acuminate apex; calyx 6–9-toothedAnopterus
Leaves < 8 cm long and less than 4 times long as wide, with more or less obtuse apex; calyx 5-toothed
                       Back to 1

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