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FNA | Family List | FNA Vol. 12 | Euphorbiaceae

20. Hura Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 2: 1008. 1753; Gen. Pl. ed. 5, 439. 1754.

Sandbox tree [Native American word for poisonous sap, alluding to caustic latex] Sandbox tree [Native American word for poisonous sap, alluding to caustic latex]

Michael J. Huft

Trees, monoecious; trunk with broad-based, conic thorns; hairs unbranched; latex white or colorless. Leaves deciduous, alternate, simple; stipules present, caducous; petiole present, glands present at apex, lateral, conspicuous; blade unlobed, margins serrate or crenate-serrulate, laminar glands absent; venation pinnate. Inflorescences usually unisexual, rarely bisexual (pistillate flowers proximal, staminate distal); staminate terminal, spikelike thyrses, cymules densely crowded in conelike structure; pistillate axillary, solitary flowers; bisexual as in staminate with solitary pistillate flower at base; glands subtending each bract 0. Pedicels present. Staminate flowers: sepals 5, imbricate, connate most of length; petals 0; nectary absent; stamens 10–80, connate entire length forming thick column; pistillode absent. Pistillate flowers: sepals 5, connate entire length; petals 0; nectary absent; pistil 5–20-carpellate; style 1, unbranched, terminating in lobed stigmatic disc. Fruits capsules, woody. Seeds lenticular; caruncle absent. x = 11.

Species 2 (1 in the flora): introduced, Florida; Mexico, West Indies, Central America, South America; introduced also in tropical areas worldwide.

Hura polyandra Baillon is distributed from Mexico to Nicaragua.

Lower Taxon


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