Prance, G.T. (2009). Neotropical Anisophylleaceae.
Trees or shrubs. Leaves simple , heterophyllous, in spirals or alternate , or four ranked, the margins entire , secondary veins palmately veined (3-5-plinerved). Stipules absent or minute. Inflorescence of axillary racemes or panicles. Flowers monoecious ; calyx 4- lobed ; petals 4, valvate , clawed or laciniate in Anisophyllea R.Br. ex Sabine; anthers 8, in two whorls, obdiplosteminous; epigynoous disc present; ovary inferior, 4-carpelled, syncarpous, ovules 1-2 per carpel , pendulous; styles 4. Fruit indehiscent , dry or drupe or a samara, one seeded (in Polygonanthus Ducke); germination hypogeal. n = 7, 8.
- General Description
Notes on delimitation
- Often formerly placed in Rhizophoraceae but differs in the spirally arranged exstipulate leaves and distinct styles and in the petals not aristate.
- Now placed in the Cucurbitales by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group near to Begoniaceae.
- Polygonanthus endemic to Brazilian Amazonia
- Anisophyllea also occurs in the Old World
Distribution in the Neotropics
- Pantropical with four genera, two of which are Neotropical.
Distinguishing characters (always present)
Few defining characters:
- Leaves often drying yellowish and often asymmetrical at base
- Clawed or lacinate petals in Anisophyllea
- Winged samara in Polygonanthus
Key to genera of Neotropical Anisophyllaceae
1. Petals laciniate or clawed; fruit a capsule —Anisophyllea
1. Petals simple not clawed; fruit a samara—Polygonanthus
Schwarbach, A. E. 2000. Systematic affinities of Rhizophoraceae and Anisophyllaceae, and intergeneric relationships within the Rhizophoraceae, based on chloroplast DNA, nuclear ribosomal DNA, and morphology. Am. Jour. Bot. 87:547-564.
Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
- The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2022. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and https://powo.science.kew.org/
- © Copyright 2022 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
- Milliken, W., Klitgard, B. and Baracat, A. (2009 onwards), Neotropikey - Interactive key and information resources for flowering plants of the Neotropics.