Description: Low much-branched annual or perennial herbs or shrubs.
Leaves opposite, usually entire.
Heads solitary, terminal, on hollow and sometimes inflated peduncles; heads cylindrical to campanulate; involucral bracts 3-seriate, imbricate, graduated, scarious; receptacle conic to nearly flat, chaffy, scales persistent, enfolding the achenes. Ray florets fertile; ligules firm, persistent, often resin-dotted and strigose beneath. Disc florets bisexual, fertile, tubular; 5-toothed, one lobe often longer than the others. Anthers truncate to auriculate at the base, with narrow acute terminal appendages. Style branches filiform.
Achenes compressed, ± obovate; ray ones becoming tuberculate, sometimes corky, usually awnless; disc achenes variable, ± smooth, ciliate and sometimes corky, often with a single erect awn but outer ones 3-angled and tuberculate.
Distribution and occurrence: World: 17 species, Central & South America. Australia: 1 species (naturalized).
Text by L. Murray
|One species in NSW: Zinnia peruviana|