Synonyms: Abolbodaceae APNI*
Description: Perennial or sometimes annual herbs; roots fibrous; stem usually short.
Leaves mostly or all basal, distichous or occasionally spirally arranged; lamina narrow, flat to cylindrical or filiform.
Inflorescences usually many, bracteate, each a compact globose to cylindrical spike on a long scape-like peduncle; few–many-flowered. Flowers actinomorphic or zygomorphic, mostly 3-merous, bisexual. Perianth in 2 unequal whorls; outer tepals 3 [or 2], usually free, often unequal in size; inner tepals 3, petaloid, free or fused into a short or long tube and lobes spreading, yellow or less frequently blue or white. Stamens 3 [or 6], usually opposite the inner tepals and attached to them; anthers 2-locular, dehiscing by longitudinal slits. Staminodes sometimes present, then alternating with inner tepals. Carpels 3, fused, superior; ovary 1- or [at least partially] 3-locular; placentation parietal, axile or variable; ovules many per loculus; style simple or 3-branched.
Fruit capsular, usually loculicidal; seeds ovoid to oblong-fusiform, usually striate.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 4 genera, c. 410 species, tropical & subtropical and sometimes temperate regions. Australia: 1 genus, c. 20 species, all States.
Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (Family: Xyridaceae, Order: Poales)
Text by A. N. L. Doust & B. J. Conn