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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 11/29/2012)
 

Flora Data (Last Modified On 11/29/2012)
Family LOASACEAE
Description Mostly perennial or annual herbs, sometimes quite massive, erect or clambering, infrequently twining or climbing, characteristically strongly hispid and with stinging hairs and glochids. Leaves opposite or alternate, variously incised and occasionally palmatifid or pinnatifid; stipules lacking or vestigal. Inflorescence terminal or extra-axillary, basically cymose but frequently monopodial and occa- sionally reduced to a solitary flower. Flowers dichlamydeous, hermaphrodite, epigynous, 5- or rarely 4-, 6-, or 7-merous; sepals foliaceous, imbricate or open in aestivation; petals free or united at the base, imbricated or contorted; stamens rarely 5-10 or fewer, usually very numerous, the filaments more or less united to the base of the corolla, all fertile or partly staminodial and more or less petaloid; ovary inferior, usually 3- to 5-carpellate and 1-celled with numerous ovules on parietal placentas, rarely 1-carpellate with a single pendulous ovule (Gronovia), the style simple with a capitate or obscurely divided stigma. Fruit a variously dehiscent capsule.
Habit herb
Note Except for the peculiar monotypic genus Kissenia of Africa and southern Arabia, the Loasaceae are an American family most frequent in arid or semi-arid regions with greatest diversification in Mexico and the southwestern United States and in Chile. Those who have encountered them in the field remember them henceforth chiefly because of their painfully stinging hairs which seem to have been specially contrived to protect the elaborate and frequently very showy flowers.
Key a. Ovary 3- to 5-carpellate, with numerous ovules or parietal placentas; stamens 10 to many, frequently staminoidial in part; erect or sprawling herbs; leaves variously incised or lobed, sometimes pinnatifid or pinnate. b. Stamens all fertile or the outer becoming centrifugally petaloid. - 1. MENTZELIA bb. Fertile stamens antesepalous, staminodia antesepalous. c. Flowers 4-merous; staminodia free or united only at the base - . 2. KLAPROTHIA cc. Flowers 5-(rarely 6- to 7-)merous; staminodia strongly united into a more or less saccate petaloid scale. -.-----------------------------.-.-....3. LOASA aa. Ovary 1-carpellate, with a single apical pendulous ovule; stamens 5, all fertile; slender twiners; leaves very deeply and palmately divided ------------ 4. GRONOVIA
Note The genus Sclerothrix extends from southern Mexico to Bolivia and is to be expected in Panama. It resembles Klaprothia strongly, but may be recognized readily by its spirally contorted fruits.
 
 
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