1. Malpighiaceae Juss.

    1. This family is accepted.

[FTEA]

Malpighiaceae, E. Launert (British Museum (Natural History)). Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1968

Habit
Mostly woody climbers, sometimes shrubs or small trees, with unicellular appressed (sometimes fork-shaped) medifixed ± stiff hairs
Leaves
Leaves opposite, ternate or alternate, simple and entire, often with glands near the base of the lamina or on the petiole; stipules present or absent
Inflorescences
Inflorescence terminal or axillary, usually many-flowered and racemose (or more rarely flowers solitary); bracts and bracteoles present
Flowers
Flowers actinomorphic or zygomorphic, bisexual (in African genera)
Calyx
Sepals 5, free or connate at the base, persistent, often with glands outside
Corolla
Petals 5, frequently clawed, free, imbricate, entire or with fringed or dentate margins
Androecium
Stamens 10, with those of the outer series opposite the petals; filaments often connate at the base; anthers dehiscing longitudinally, introrse, basifixed or dorsifixed, 2-thecous
Gynoecium
Ovary superior, syncarpous, 3(rarely 2, 4, or 5)-locular and -lobed, with 1 pendulous axile ovule in each locule; styles as many as the carpels with usually entire stigmas
Fruits
Fruit a schizocarp, usually winged (samara), rarely a fleshy drupe
Seeds
Seeds with a large usually straight embryo, without endosperm
[FZ]

Malpighiaceae, E. Launert. Flora Zambesiaca 2:1. 1963

Habit
Mostly woody climbers, sometimes shrubs or small trees, with unicellular appressed (sometimes V-shaped) medifixed ± stiff hairs
Leaves
Leaves opposite, ternate or alternate, simple and entire, often with glands near the base of the lamina or on the petiole; stipules present or absent
Inflorescences
Inflorescence terminal or axillary, usually many-flowered and racemose (or more rarely flowers solitary); bracts and bracteoles present
Flowers
Flowers actinomorphic or zygomorphic, bisexual (in African genera)
Calyx
Sepals 5, free or connate at the base, persistent, often with dorsal glands
Corolla
Petals 5, frequently unguiculate, free, imbricate, entire or with fringed or dentate margin
Androecium
Stamens 10, obdiplostemonous, with filaments often connate at the base; anthers dehiscing longitudinally, introrse, basifixed or dorsifixed, 2-thecous
Gynoecium
Ovary superior, syncarpous, 3 (rarely 2, 4, or 5) -locular and -lobed, with 1 pendulous axile ovule in each loculus; styles as many as the carpels, with usually entire stigmas
Fruits
Fruit a schizocarp, usually winged (samara), rarely a fleshy drupe
Seeds
Seeds with a large usually straight embryo, without endosperm
[FWTA]

Malpighiaceae, Hutchinson and Dalziel. Flora of West Tropical Africa 1:2. 1958

Habit
Trees, shrubs or climbers, usually clothed with appressed medifixed hairs
Leaves
Leaves opposite or rarely alternate, simple; a pair of glands often present at the base of the blade; stipules present or absent, sometimes connate
Flowers
Flowers mostly hermaphrodite, actinomorphic
Calyx
Sepals 5, imbricate or rarely valvate, often biglandular outside
Corolla
Petals 5, clawed
Nectaries
Disk small
Androecium
Stamens 10, hypogynous; filaments free or connate at the base; anthers 2-celled, opening lengthwise
Gynoecium
Carpels usually 3, free or connate into a 3-celled ovary; cells 1-ovuled; styles usually separate and spreading
Fruits
Fruiting carpels mostly winged or carpels connate into a fleshy or woody drupe
Seeds
Seeds without endosperm and with straight, curved or uncinate, rarely circinate embryo
[NTK]

Zappi, D. (2015). Neotropical Malpghiaceae.

Morphology
Description

Trees, treelets, shrubs, stem twisting lianas and climbers and occasionally herbs sprouting from a woody rootstock, plants with T-shaped and stellate trichomes and a variety of indumenta. Leaves opposite, with stipules, these fused in some genera and becoming intrapetiolar stipules, leaves often whorled distribution at the end of stems (savana trees and shrubs); leaf- blade entire , with large multicellular glands at the leaf-base or petiole . Inflorescences variable, from axillary fasicles to terminal racemes or panicles, often showy. Flowers 5- merous , hermaphrodite , subtly to strongly zygomorphic , calyx with 5 distinct sepals generally bearing two (rarely one) extra-floral nectaries, sometimes nectary missing from one sepal or completely (Galphimia L.); petals 5, free , aestivation imbricate , unguiculate at base, often with frilly edges, one larger 'flag' petal white, pink, magenta, yellow or orange, sometimes changing colour during anthesis; anthers 10; ovary superior , 3-locular, stigmas 3, separate. Fruit schizocarp with winged mericarps or drupaceous , sometimes fleshy and edible.

Distribution
Distribution in the Neotropics

Exclusively Tropical and Subtropical, the majority of Malpighiaceae occurs in the Neotropics (90% of species). Currently with 75 genera and over 1260 species.

  • Acmanthera (A. Juss) Griseb.: 7 spp. Brazil
  • Adelphia W.R. Anderson: 4 spp. Jamaica, Central America and western South America
  • Aenigmatanthera W.R. Anderson: 2 spp. Brazil and Bolivia
  • Alicia W.R. Anderson: 2 spp. South America
  • Amorimia W.R. Anderson: 10 spp., Colombia to Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil
  • Aspicarpa Rich.: 10 spp. Americas
  • Banisteriopsis C.B. Rob.: 61 spp.
  • Barnebya W.R. Anderson & B. Gates:  2 spp. Brazil
  • Blepharandra Griseb.: 6 spp. Guyana, Venezuela and Amazonian Brazil.
  • Bronwenia  W.R. Anderson: 10 spp. South America to Mexico
  • Bunchosia H.B.K.: 75 spp. From Mexico and Carribean to South Brazil and Argentina
  • Burdachia A. Juss.: 2-3 spp. Guyana, Amazonian Venezuela, Colombia, Brazil and Peru.
  • Byrsonima  H.B.K.: about 135 spp. from Southern Mexico and Caribbean to southeastern Brazil.
  • Calcicola  W.R. Anderson & C. Davis: 2 spp. Mexico
  • Callaeum Small: 11 spp. Western Texas to South America.
  • Camarea  A. St.-Hil.: 9 spp. Brazil
  • Carolus  W. R. Anderson: 6 spp. Mexico, Central America, Lesser Antilles and South America
  • Christianella  W.R. Anderson: 5 spp. Mexico to South America
  • Coelostachys  A. Juss.: 1 sp. French Guiana and Brazil
  • Cordobia Nied.: 1 sp. Argentina
  • Cottsia Dubard & Dop: 3 spp. Mexico & USA.
  • Diacidia Griseb.: 11 spp. Venezuela, Brazil, Colombia
  • Dicella Griseb.: 7 spp. South America
  • Dinemagonum  A. Juss.: 1 sp. Chile
  • Dinemandra A. Juss.: 1 sp. Chile
  • Diplopterys A. Juss.: 31 spp.
  • Echinopterys A. Juss.: 2 spp. Mexico
  • Ectopopterys W.R. Anderson: 1 sp. Colombia, Ecuador and Peru
  • Excentradenia W.R. Anderson: 4 spp. Northern South America
  • Gallardoa Hicken: 1 sp. Argentina
  • Galphimia Cav.: 26 spp. South and North America
  • Gaudichaudia Kunth: 21 spp. Mexico, Central America and northern South America
  • Glandonia Griseb.: 3 spp. Colombia, Venezuela and Brazil
  • Heladena A. Juss.: 1 sp. Southern Brazil, Paraguay and northeastern Argentina
  • Henleophytum H. Karst.: 1 sp. Cuba
  • Heteropterys H.B.K.: more than 140 spp. Neotropics and subtropics, 1 sp. from West Africa
  • Hiraea Jacq.: 55 spp. Western Mexico to Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil
  • Janusia A. Juss.: 14 spp. Americas
  • Jubelina A. Juss.: 6 spp. Central America and northern South America
  • Lophanthera A. Juss.: 5 spp. Costa Rica and Amazonian South America
  • Lophopterys A. Juss.: 7 spp. South America
  • Malpighia L.: More than 50 spp. North America, South America, Caribbean
  • Malpighiodes Nied.: 4 spp. Northen South America
  • Mascagnia (Bertero ex DC.) Colla: 45 spp. Mexico to northern Argentina and southeastern Brazil, and Caribbean
  • Mcvaughia W. R. Anderson: 2 spp. Brazil
  • Mezia Nied. 10 spp.: South America and Panama
  • Mionandra Griseb.: 1 sp. Argentina
  • Niedenzuella W.R. Anderson: 16 spp. South America
  • Peixotoa A. Juss.: 29 spp. southeastern Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay.
  • Peregrina W.R. Anderson: 1 sp. Brazil
  • Psychopterys W.R. Anderson & S. Corso: 8 spp. Southern Mexico, Guatemala and Belize.
  • Pterandra A. Juss.: 15 spp. Neotropics.
  • Ptilochaeta Turcz.: 4 spp. South America
  • Spachea A. Juss.: 6 spp. Cuba, southern Central America and northern South America
  • Stigmaphyllon A. Juss.: 93 spp. throughout Neotropics, 1 sp. in West Africa
  • Tetrapterys Cav.: 65 spp. Neotropics
  • Thryallis Mart.: 5 spp. Brazil, Paraguay and Bolivia
  • Tricomaria Hook. & Arn.: 1 spp. western Argentina
  • Verrucularia A. Juss.; 2 spp. Brazil
Diagnostic
Distinguishing characters (always present)
  • T-shaped trichomes at least on petioles and young pubescent growth.
  • Unguiculate petals arranged in rounded, often nodding flowerbuds.
  • Ovary with three separate stigmas.
  • Opposite or whorled stipulate leaves.
  • Large multicellular glands on petiole or blade, usually abaxially.
Other important characters
  • Extra-floral nectaries onthe outside of the sepals (two per sepal in 4 or 5 sepals, sometimes missing).
  • Leaves always simple, sometimes lobed or cordate, margin entire (never serrate/dentate/crenate).
  • Tree genera sometimes with intrapetiolar stipules.
  • Climbing genera often have schizocarpic, winged fruits.
Key differences from similar families
  • T-shaped trichomes and glands over sepals and at leaf bases set them apart from other climbers with opposite leaves (Combretaceae, Celastraceae).
  • Glands over sepals and dialypetalous corolla sets them apart from Verbenaceae, Lamiaceae, Rubiaceae and other simple, opposite leaved Asteridae.
  • Five petals and five sepals differentiate them from Vochysiaceae which often have similar leaves.
Useful tips for generic identification

A key for all Malpighiaceae genera can be found in the website of the Michigan Herbarium (http://herbarium.lsa.umich.edu/malpigh/Intro/Keys1.html).

Notable genera and distinguishing features
  • The proportion between climbers and trees and shrubs in the family is 50:50.
  • Byrsonima, Bunchosia and Malpighia emarginata are trees and shrubs with fleshy, edible fruits, they often have intrapetiolar stipules.
  • The majority of climbing species have schizocarpic fruits (Tetrapterys, Banisteropsis, Mascagnia, Pteropterys).
  • Galphimia lacks the typical glands on the outside of the sepals.
General Description
Status
  • Native in the Neotropics, with Malpighia glabra (Barbados cherry, acerola) from the Caribbean cultivated widely worldwide for its vitamin C rich fruits, and Malpighia coccigera (Singapore holly) cultivated in SE Asia and S China as ornamental.
General notes
  • Apart from cultivated Malpighia species (see above), and the Amazonian treeLophantera lactescens (Brazilian gold-shower tree), the family comprises numerous shrubs, trees and climbers with ornamental potential. Most of the consumption of Byrsonima spp. fruits, known as 'murici' in Brazil, is harvested from nature.
  • The centre of diversity of Malpighiaceae is South America, N of the Tropic of Capricorn (Anderson 2004).
  • Malpighiaceae flowers are attractive to oil-collecting bees, that are ecologically closely associated to this plant family. The distinctive, mostly paired glands that occupy four or five of the sepals secret oil, and the stalked, or unguiculate, petals provide easy access to the bees to the oil-glands (Gentry 1993).
Notes on delimitation
  • Malpighiaceae is grouped together with Euphorbiaceae, Passifloraceae and Salicaceae under Order Malpighiales within the APG III system.
  • Cronquist (1981) had placed this family under the Subclass Rosidae, in Order Polygalales.
Literature
Important literature

Anderson, W.R. (2004) In: Smith, N., Mori, S.A., Henderson, A., Stevenson, D.Wm. & Heald, S.V. (eds.) Flowering Plants of the Neotropics. The New York Botanical Garden/Princeton University Press, New Jersey, 229-232.

Anderson, W., Anderson, C. & C.C. Davies. Malpighiaceae (22nd Oct 2015). http://herbarium.lsa.umich.edu/malpigh/index.html

A.P.G. [= Angiosperm Phylogeny Group] III. 2009. An update of the Angiosperm< /A> Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III. Bot. J. Linnean Soc. 161: 105-121.

Gentry, A.H. 1993. A Field Guide to the Families and Genera of Woody Plants of Northwest South America. Conservation International, Washington.

Images

Malpighiaceae Juss. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Gen. Pl. [Jussieu] 252. 1789 [4 Aug 1789] (1789)

Accepted by

  • APG IV (2016) http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/boj.12385

Sources

Colombian resources for Plants made Accessible
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Flora Zambesiaca
Flora Zambesiaca
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of Tropical East Africa
Flora of Tropical East Africa
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Flora of West Tropical Africa
Flora of West Tropical Africa
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0

Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2019. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/
© Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0

Neotropikey
Milliken, W., Klitgard, B. and Baracat, A. (2009 onwards), Neotropikey - Interactive key and information resources for flowering plants of the Neotropics.
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0