Spermatophyta: Dicotyledonae: Archichlamydeae: Malpighiales

Euphorbiaceae - Euphorbia family

Carter, S. & Leach, L.C. (2001) Euphorbiaceae: subfamily Euphorbioideae: tribe Euphorbieae Flora Zambesiaca 9(5)

Govaerts, R. et al. (2000) World Checklist and Bibliography of Euphorbiaceae (and Pandaceae) Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Radcliffe-Smith, A. (1996) Euphorbiaceae Flora Zambesiaca 9(4)

Description of the family

Dioecious or monoecious herbs, shrubs or trees, sometimes succulent, spiny or unarmed, sometimes with milky latex. Hairs 0, simple, stellate or stinging. Stipules present or 0. Leaves alternate, rarely opposite or in whorls, usually simple, less often lobed or compound. Glands sometimes present near the apex of the petiole and base of lamina. Inflorescences various, sometimes in cyathia. Flowers unisexual, usually actinomorphic and very small. Calyx usually of 3-6 lobes or free sepals. Corolla with 3-6 free or ± united petals or 0. Disk present or 0. Stamens 3-many. Ovary superior, 1-4(-20)-locular, most commonly 3-locular. Styles (1-)3(-20). Fruit usually splitting into three 2-valved cocci, less often indehiscent. Seeds 1-2 per loculus, with or without a caruncle.

Comment: According to the most recent taxonomic research by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group (APG-III), the traditional concepts of Euphorbiaceae were no longer found satisfactory. Many genera, formerly included in this family, have therefore now been placed in separate families. As this new concept has become widely accepted, we have adjusted accordingly, resulting in the following changes:

The genera formerly making up the subfamily Phyllanthoideae are now placed in Phyllanthaceae, with the exception of
Drypetes, which has been placed in the small family Putranjivaceae;
The genus Clutia has been placed in the small family Peraceae.

Worldwide: 313 genera and 8,100 species, cosmopolitan.

Zimbabwe: 16 cultivated genera and 34 cultivated taxa.

Vernicia montana

Links to cultivated genera:     View: living plant images - herbarium specimen images - all images for this family

GenusContent
Acalypha L.Description
Aleurites J.R. Forst. & G. Forst.Description
Codiaeum A. Juss.
Croton L.Description
Euphorbia L.Description, Image
Excoecaria L.Description
Homalanthus A. Juss.Description, Image
Hura L.
Jatropha L.Description, Image
Manihot Mill.Image
Paracroton Miq.
Pedilanthus Neck. ex A. Poit.Description
Ricinus L.Description, Image
Sapium P. Browne
Synadenium Boiss.Description
Vernicia Lour.Description, Image

Other sources of information about Euphorbiaceae:

Our websites:

Flora of Botswana: Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Botswana: cultivated Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Caprivi: Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Caprivi: cultivated Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Malawi: Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Malawi: cultivated Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Mozambique: Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Mozambique: cultivated Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Zambia: Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Zambia: cultivated Euphorbiaceae
Flora of Zimbabwe: Euphorbiaceae

External websites:

GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network) taxonomy for plants report for Euphorbiaceae
Google: Web - Images - Scholar


Copyright: Mark Hyde, Bart Wursten, Petra Ballings and Meg Coates Palgrave, 2002-16

Hyde, M.A., Wursten, B.T., Ballings, P. & Coates Palgrave, M. (2016). Flora of Zimbabwe: Cultivated plants: Family page: Euphorbiaceae.
http://www.zimbabweflora.co.zw/cult/family.php?family_id=87, retrieved 1 July 2016

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