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Project Name Data (Last Modified On 1/14/2013)

Flora Data (Last Modified On 1/14/2013)
Contributor LORIN I. NEVLING, JR.
Description Fleshy root parasites, rhizomatous, lacking chlorophyll, the rhizome tuberous, digitiform, cylindrical or filiform, sometimes branched, naked or sometimes with scale-leaves, yellow to dark red in color. Inflorescence monoecious or dioecious, highly modified, of endogenous origin, above ground at anthesis, more or less erect, sessile or pedunculate (in our species), the peduncle terete, with or without an encircling, often basal sheath, scaly or naked above the sheath, the head with or without protective peltate scales, sometimes with paraphysoid trichomes or reduced pistillate flowers surrounding or subtending the flowers. Flowers unisexual, mono- chlamydeous, small. Perianth absent or more often present, of 2-4 (-8) tepals, free or connate into a tube of varying size and shape, in pistillate flowers sometimes reduced to an epigynous collar or absent. Stamens generally as many as perianth segments and opposite them, the filaments free or connate into a staminal column of varying length, sometimes very short, the anthers free or connate into a syandrium, introrse or extrorse; absent in pistillate flowers. Pistil composed of 1, 2 (or 3) carpels, the ovules usually 1 per carpel, lacking integument, often fused to the wall of the ovary, the styles 1 or 2, terminal, the stigma usually simple, rarely sessile; in staminate flowers absent or reduced to a pistillode. Fruit nut-like or drupaceous, the endocarp usually hard; seed sometimes fused to the wall of the fruit, the embryo apical in the fleshy oil-rich endosperm, with or without suspensor.
Distribution Approximately 18 genera, pantropic but primarily distributed in the Southern Hemisphere. Three genera are represented in Panama.
Key a. Inflorescence monoecious or rarely dioecious, the peduncle with or without an encircling sheath, otherwise naked, the head when immature covered with deciduous, 6-sided, peltate scales, the staminate and pistillate flowers surrounded by claviform, paraphysoid trichomes; staminate flowers with the perianth segments connate at least in the lower half, the anthers completely connate, a small pistillode sometimes present; pistillate flowers with the pistil 2-carpellate, the styles 2, spreading; fruit ovoid, ellipsoid or obovoid, compressed. b. Staminate flowers with perianth of 3 (-6) tepals, connate in the lower half into a tube, the lobes becoming widely reflexed, the filaments adnate to the perianth below, free or connate below into a staminal column, usually free above, the anthers each with two posterior pollen sacs and one anterior pollen sac. - - ,,,,,, 1. HELOSIS bb. Staminate flowers with the perianth segments completely connate, the margin crenate, the filaments free from the perianth, completely connate, the anthers each with 2 large lateral pollen sacs.,-,,,,,,,,,,,,, 2. CORYNAEA aa. Inflorescence dioecious or rarely monoecious, the peduncle with an en- circling basal sheath, scaly, the head when immature covered by the imbricate peduncle scales, the staminate flowers subtended by reduced pistillate flowers, the pistillate flowers agglutinate into a dense mat, ebracteate; staminate flowers with the perianth segments free, the anthers connate below, free above, pistillode absent; pistillate flowers with the pistil 1-carpellate, the style 1, erect; fruit ellipsoid, never compressed.-................... ... ....... .... .. ...... ........... 3. LANGSDORFFIA
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