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FOC | Family List | FOC Vol. 19 | Rubiaceae

83. Scyphiphora C. F. Gaertner, Suppl. Carp. 91. 1806.

瓶花木属 ping hua mu shu

Authors: Tao Chen & Charlotte M. Taylor

Shrubs or small trees, unarmed, rather succulent, sometimes with stilt roots; young growth usually mucilaginous or resinous. Raphides presumably absent. Leaves opposite, decussate, without domatia, notably leathery, with petioles articulate; stipules persistent, united around stem, rounded to truncate, entire, enclosing well-developed colleters. Inflorescence axillary, congested-cymose with axes often articulate and regularly dichotomous, pedunculate, bracteate with bracts small and fused in pairs, apparently caducous. Flowers sessile or pedicellate, bisexual, monomorphic. Calyx limb cupuliform, subtruncate or (4 or)5-denticulate. Corolla white or pink, salverform with tube somewhat expanded in throat, pubescent inside; lobes (4 or)5, convolute in bud. Stamens (4 or)5, inserted in corolla just below throat, partially to fully exserted; filaments short; anthers dorsifixed, bifid at base. Ovary 2-celled, ovules 2 in each cell, axile and attached in middle of septum with 1 erect and 1 pendulous; stigmas 2, exserted. Fruit drupaceous (or indehiscent depending on interpretation), ellipsoid-oblong to ellipsoid, often weakly curved, fleshy becoming corky, (6-)8-ridged or -winged, with calyx limb persistent; pyrene 1, 2-celled, with 2 seeds in each cell, ellipsoid and longitudinally ridged or winged; seeds medium-sized, subcylindrical; testa membranous; endosperm reduced; cotyledons oblong; radicle long.

One species: coastal China, Madagascar, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, and Pacific region east to Caroline Islands, New Caledonia, and Australia.

This unusual species was studied in some detail by Puff and Rohrhofer (Opera Bot. Belg. 6: 143-172. 1993), who reported that the flowers have an "ixoroid" pollination mechanism, in which the flowers are protandrous and deposit the pollen on the outside of the stigmas and the style for dispersal. The presence or absence of raphides seems not to have been specifically noted; their absence is presumed here based on the classification by many authors of this genus in Gardenieae.

W. C. Chen (in FRPS 71(1): 368. 1999) described the funiculi of the ovules as connate, but this condition has not been otherwise reported and contradicts the work of Puff and Rohrhofer (loc. cit.).

Lower Taxon


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