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Combretum Leefl.


Description from Flora of China

Cacoucia Aublet; Embryogonia Blume; Grislea Linnaeus; Poivrea Commerson ex Candolle.

Lianas woody, or shrubs when lacking climbing support, rarely non-climbing shrubs, trees, or subherbaceous. Leaves opposite, whorled, or rarely alternate; petiole sometimes persistent and thornlike; leaf blade variable in shape, generally elliptic or oblong-elliptic to broadly ovate, hairy or glabrous, often conspicuously scaly, often with domatia. Inflorescences terminal, axillary, or extra-axillary, simple or branched spikes, racemes, or panicles. Calyx tube usually shorter than 2 cm, proximally ellipsoid or fusiform, slightly contracted above ovary, distally narrowly funnelform to saucer-shaped; lobes 4 or 5, rarely more, deltoid to subulate, sometimes almost absent. Petals 4 or 5, white, yellow, orange, red, or purple, small and inconspicuous or showy and exceeding calyx lobes. Stamens usually 8 or 10, usually exserted from calyx tube. Style not adnate to inside of calyx tube (in Chinese species). Fruit often shortly stipitate, dry, rarely fleshy, longitudinally 4- or 5-winged, -ridged, or -angled, broadly winged in Chinese species with wings equal, papery, transversely striate; endocarp not sclerenchymatous.

Cacoucia chinensis A. Jussieu ex Candolle (Prodr. 3: 22. 1828) was said to have originated in China. The application of this name is unclear. The fruit was described as 5-angled.

Combretum chinense Roxburgh ex G. Don (Trans. Linn. Soc. London 15: 432. 1827) was said by its author to have originated from China. It was treated by Exell (in Steenis, Fl. Males., ser. 1, 4: 540. 1954), who apparently did not see the type, as a name of uncertain application. Nanakorn (Thai Forest Bull. 16: 171-175. 1986) designated Roxburgh s.n. in Herb. Lambert (G) as the lectotype and, having examined that specimen, accepted the name C. chinense for a species distributed from India to Indochina and Indonesia (but not in China) and similar morphologically to C. yunnanense (C. griffithii var. yunnanense in the present treatment).

About 250 species: mostly in tropical and S Africa, also in tropics of America and Asia, and Madagascar; eight species (one endemic) in China.

Lower Taxa


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