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Juncaceae A. L. Jussieu


Description from Flora of China

Herbs, very rarely shrublike, perennial or annual, tufted or with erect or creeping rhizome. Stems erect, terete or laterally flattened. Leaves occasionally reduced to a bladeless or nearly bladeless sheath at base of stem (cataphyll); leaf sheath often shortly prolonged on both sides into a pair of auricles at leaf blade juncture; leaf blade of basal and cauline leaves usually linear or filiform, grasslike and flat, or terete, glabrous except for pilose margin on some grasslike blades. Inflorescence a panicle, corymb, or 1-flowered. Flowers bisexual or unisexual and plants dioecious, mostly wind pollinated, regular, usually small, usually 1- or 2-bracteolate at base. Perianth segments (3 or)6, in (1 or)2 whorls, free, usually greenish to brownish or blackish, rarely white or yellowish, glumelike. Stamens 3 or 6, if 6 then 3 opposite outer perianth segments; filaments thin; anthers basifixed, 2-loculed, dehiscing by longitudinal slits; pollen grains in tetrads. Ovary superior, 1-loculed, or divided by 3 septa and 3-loculed, or incompletely septate; ovules 3 and inserted at base of ovary, or numerous and biseriate on 3 parietal placentas. Stigmas 3, papillose. Fruit a capsule, 1--3-valved, loculicidal. Seeds globose, ovoid, or fusiform, small, sometimes appendaged; appendage caudate; embryo straight, minute, enclosed by fleshy endosperm.

Wu Kuo-fang. 1997. Juncaceae. In: Wu Kuo-fang, ed., Fl. Reipubl. Popularis Sin. 13(3): 146--253.

About eight genera and ca. 400 species: widely distributed in temperate and cold regions of both hemispheres, in tropical regions restricted to high elevations; two genera and 92 species (33 endemic) in China.

(Authors: Wu Guofang (吴国芳 Wu Kuo-fang); Steven E. Clemants)

Lower Taxa


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