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Published In: Species Plantarum 2: 1007. 1753. (1 May 1753) (Sp. Pl.) Name publication detailView in BotanicusView in Biodiversity Heritage Library

Project Name Data (Last Modified On 6/2/2011)
Acceptance : Accepted
Project Data     (Last Modified On 6/3/2011)
Contributor Text: A. RADCLIFFE-SMITH
General/Distribution: A monotypic genus originally native to NE Tropical Africa, but now widely cultivated throughout the tropics, subtropics and warm temperate regions, and often escaping and becoming naturalized.


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A large monoecious glabrous annual or perennial herb. Leaves alternate, petiolate, stipulate, peltate, palmately-lobed, the lobes glandular-serrate, penninerved. Petioles glandular at apex and base. Stipule united to form a caducous sheath. Inflorescences paniculate, subterminal or leaf-opposed, ♂ in the lower half and ♀ in the upper or else all ♀; bracts membranous, soon caducous. Male flowers: pedicels articulate, bibracteolate; buds globose, closed, later splitting into 3-5 valvate lobes; petals 0; disc 0; stamens up to 1000 with the filaments variously united, anthers basifixed, the cells globose, longitudinally dehiscent; pistillode 0. Female flowers; pedicels extending in fruit; buds conical; sepals 5, valvate, soon caducous; petals 0; disc 0; ovary 3-celled, with 1 ovule per cell, echinate or smooth; styles 3, ± free, bipartite, papillose-plumose, dark red. Fruit trilobate, echinate or smooth, dehiscing into 3 bivalved cocci. Seeds dorsiventrally compressed-ovoid, smooth, carunculate, testa crustaceous, albumen fleshy; cotyledons broad, flat.

Lower Taxa
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