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Genus Tecticornia Family Chenopodiaceae

Synonyms: Halosarcia APNI*

Description: Erect or spreading small annual or perennial herbs or shrubs.

Leaves opposite, succulent or reduced to scarious lobes.

Inflorescence terminal or lateral, spike-like, with opposite pairs of (1-)3(-7)-flowered cymulesin the axils of bracts or distributed along the vegetative stems. Flowers sessile, bisexual or occasionally femail, andromonoecious (bisexual central floret with male lateral florets) or the plant dioecious; perianth lobes 2, with or without 1 abaxial; stamen 1; ovary 2(-3)-lobed.

Seed white, gold, brown or black, with or without a beak; orientation horizontal, vertical or rotated laterally; embyro straight or curved; perisperm abundant, generally lateral.

Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 33 species. Australia: 33 species, all endemic except T. australasica and two subspecies of T. indica.

Usually in saline areas, either arid or coastal.

Text by S. W. L. Jacobs (1990); edited KL Wilson (Feb 2011)
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW vol 1 (1990); KA Shepherd & PG Wilson (2007)

 Key to the species 
1Seeds smooth and glossy all over; articles with Kranz (C4) anatomy or non-Kranz (C3) anatomy2
Seeds variously tuberculate or ribbed around the edge, smooth or ornamented on the sides; articles with non-Kranz (C3) anatomy3
2Margins of leaf lobes finely toothed or finely ciliate (rarely entire); articles with Kranz (C4) anatomy; perianth pithy in fruitHalosarcia indica
Margins of leaf lobes entire; articles with non-Kranz (C3) anatomy; perianth thin and brittle in fruit
                       Back to 1
Halosarcia pruinosa
3Seeds with deep concentric ridges or colliculate all over4
Seeds ribbed, tuberculate or colliculate around the margins, the sides mostly smooth
                       Back to 1
4Seeds brown to reddish brown to black, concentrically colliculate all overHalosarcia pergranulata
Seeds pale fawn to cream, deeply concentrically ribbed all over, the tips of the rib cells sometimes free, forming curved to hooked hairs
                       Back to 3
Halosarcia pterygospermum
5Seeds pale brown with tuberculate ribs around the marginsHalosarcia halocnemoides
Seeds reddish brown, colliculate (± ribbed) around the margins
                       Back to 3
6Branches and spikes succulent and swollen; projecting or undulate in outlineHalosarcia pluriflora
Branches very slender (not swollen); smooth in outline (as in Casuarinaceae)
                       Back to 5
Halosarcia lylei

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