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  1. Family: Linaceae DC. ex Perleb
    1. Linum L.

      1. This genus is accepted, and is native to Europe, Asia-Tropical, Africa, Southern America, Northern America, Australasia and Asia-Temperate..


    Linaceae, Doreen L. Smith. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1966

    Perennial or annual herbs, often woody at the base
    Leaves sessile, alternate, opposite or whorled, entire or with shortly denticulate margin
    Stipules glandular, persistent, or absent
    Inflorescence a terminal monochasial or dichasial cyme, or rarely flowers solitary
    Sepals 4–5, entire or with capitate-glandular serrate margin, free, persistent
    Petals 4–5, white,, yellow, blue, pink or red, free or very rarely united at base, shortly clawed
    Stamens 4–5, alternating with petals; staminodes occasionally present, 4–5, filiform and between the stamens, all joined at base forming a short staminal tube
    Ovary 4–5-locular; each loculus partly divided by a false septum and containing two pendulous ovules
    Styles 4–5, free or rarely united at base; stigmas linear, oblong or capitate
    Fruit a 4–5-locular, 8–10-valved capsule
    Seeds smooth and flat, with little or no endosperm present; testa becoming mucilaginous on wetting; embryo straight.

    Linaceae, N. K. B. Robson. Flora Zambesiaca 2:1. 1963

    Shrublets or, more frequently, perennial or annual herbs, sometimes woody at the base.
    Leaves sessile, alternate (or sometimes opposite or whorled at the base of the stem), entire or with a denticulate or ciliate margin, 1- to several-nerved; stipules glandular or absent.
    Flowers terminal, few to many in monochasial or subdichasial cymes or more rarely solitary, homostylic or heterostylic.
    Sepals 5, quincuncial, entire or with glandular-ciliate margin, free, persistent.
    Petals 5, yellow, blue, red, pink or white, free or very rarely united at the base, shortly and narrowly unguiculate with a terminal claw.
    Stamens 5, alternating with the petals and with the filaments ± united in the lower part to form a tube bearing 5 nectary glands outside; staminodes alternating with the stamens and forming filiform processes from the staminal tube, or absent.
    Ovary 5-locular, each loculus partially divided by a false septum; styles 5, free or rarely united in the lower half; stigmas capitate or obliquely clavate.
    Fruit a 5-locular 10-valved capsule with 2-seeded loculi, the seeds in each loculus partially separated by a well-developed false septum.
    Seeds smooth, flat, with slime-epidermis and little or no endosperm; embryo straight.



    Native to:

    Afghanistan, Alabama, Alaska, Albania, Alberta, Algeria, Altay, Amur, Angola, Argentina Northeast, Argentina Northwest, Arizona, Arkansas, Austria, Bahamas, Baleares, Baltic States, Belarus, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil Northeast, Brazil South, Brazil Southeast, Brazil West-Central, British Columbia, Bulgaria, Burundi, Buryatiya, California, Cameroon, Canary Is., Cape Provinces, Central European Rus, Chatham Is., Chile Central, Chile North, China North-Central, China South-Central, China Southeast, Chita, Colorado, Connecticut, Corse, Costa Rica, Cuba, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Delaware, Denmark, District of Columbia, Djibouti, East Aegean Is., East European Russia, East Himalaya, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Finland, Florida, France, Free State, Føroyar, Galápagos, Georgia, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Guatemala, Gulf States, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Idaho, Illinois, India, Indiana, Inner Mongolia, Iowa, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Irkutsk, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kansas, Kazakhstan, Kentucky, Kenya, Khabarovsk, Kirgizstan, Korea, Krasnoyarsk, Kriti, Krym, KwaZulu-Natal, Lebanon-Syria, Libya, Louisiana, Madeira, Magadan, Maine, Malawi, Manchuria, Manitoba, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mexico Central, Mexico Gulf, Mexico Northeast, Mexico Northwest, Mexico Southeast, Mexico Southwest, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Mongolia, Montana, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nebraska, Netherlands, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, New Zealand North, New Zealand South, Nicaragua, North Carolina, North Caucasus, North Dakota, North European Russi, Northern Provinces, Northwest European R, Northwest Territorie, Norway, Nunavut, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oman, Ontario, Oregon, Pakistan, Palestine, Paraguay, Pennsylvania, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Primorye, Qinghai, Québec, Rhode I., Romania, Rwanda, Sardegna, Saskatchewan, Saudi Arabia, Sicilia, Sinai, Socotra, Somalia, South Carolina, South Dakota, South European Russi, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tadzhikistan, Tanzania, Tasmania, Tennessee, Texas, Tibet, Transcaucasus, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkey-in-Europe, Turkmenistan, Tuva, Uganda, Ukraine, Uruguay, Utah, Uzbekistan, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Himalaya, West Siberia, West Virginia, Western Sahara, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Xinjiang, Yakutskiya, Yemen, Yugoslavia, Yukon, Zambia, Zaïre, Zimbabwe

    Introduced into:

    Argentina South, Bangladesh, Bermuda, Chile South, Dominican Republic, Hawaii, Kamchatka, New Brunswick, New Caledonia, Newfoundland, Norfolk Is., Nova Scotia, Prince Edward I., Sakhalin, Thailand, Vietnam

    Accepted Species


    Other Data

    Linum L. appears in other Kew resources:


    First published in Sp. Pl.: 277 (1753)

    Accepted by

    • Svetlova, A. (2009). The taxonomic review of the genus Linum L. (Linaceae) of the flora of Russia and adjacent states Novosti Sistematiki Vysshikh Rastenii 41: 99-165.


    Flora Zambesiaca

    • Gen. Pl. ed. 5: 135 (1754).
    • Sp. Pl. 1: 277 (1753)

    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    • L., Gen. Pl., ed. 5: 135 (1754)
    • Sp. Pl.: 277 (1753)


    Flora Zambesiaca
    Flora Zambesiaca

    Flora of Tropical East Africa
    Flora of Tropical East Africa

    Interactive Key to Seed Plants of Malesia and Indo-China
    The Malesian Key Group (2010) Interactive Key to Seed Plants of Malesia and Indo-China (Version 2.0, 28 Jul 2010) The Nationaal Herbarium Nederland Leiden and The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew

    Kew Backbone Distributions
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

    Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2020. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.