1. Asparagaceae Juss.

    1. This family is accepted.

[FTEA]

Asparagaceae, Sebsebe Demissew. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2006

Habit
Perennial scandent or erect shrubs or subshrubs, branching; rhizomes sympodial from where the branches are growing; roots often swollen and fusiform
Spines
Spines present or absent; when present these are formed usually from the reduced leaves, occasionally from branches
Leaves
Leaves normally reduced and scale-like, the assimilating function taken by modified green branches (cladodes); in some genera the branches are transformed into flattened, leaf-like cladodes (phylloclades)
Cladodes
Cladodes solitary or fascicled, subulate, angled or linear
Inflorescences
Inflorescence axillary or terminal, solitary, fascicled or assembled in racemes or “ umbels”
Flowers
Flowers unisexual or bisexual, actinomorphic, small, erect or pendulous
Perianth
Perianth with 6 tepals in two series, all similar in shape, free or fused at the base, white, cream, yellow or green
Androecium
Stamens 6, in two series, fused to the perianth segments, present both in unisexual and bisexual flowers, non-functional in female unisexual flowers; filaments free from each other, anthers introrse, dorsifixed; pollen grains sulcate
Gynoecium
Pistil with 3 carpels united to form a 2– 3-locular ovary with 1– 12 ovules in each locule; placentation axile; style short with capitate or lobed stigma
Fruits
Fruit a globose berry with 1– 2(– 3) seeds
Seeds
Seeds black, globose or truncate on one side, convex on the other
Distribution
Family represented by the genus Asparagus with two subgenera, subgenus >i>Asparagus and subgenus >i>Myrsiphyllum (S.T. Malcomber & Sebsebe Demissew in Kew Bull. 48(1): 63– 78 (1993)). The members are widely distributed in the old world. Most species are found in arid tropical regions and Mediterranean climates
[FTEA]

Eriosphermaceae, Christopher Whitehouse, B.A.. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1996

Habit
Herbs with perennial tubers and annual aerial parts, glabrous or partly pubescent (not in East Africa)
Tubers
Tubers globose to irregularly shaped; flesh white, yellow, pink or purplish red; growing points one or more, protected by a neck of sheathing fibrous remains of leaf-bases
Leaves
Leaves 1-5, appearing with or after the flowers, erect to prostrate; blade linear to broadly ovate (sometimes circular or with enations in southern Africa), often with a distinct petiole-like base
Inflorescences
Inflorescence a simple raceme, few-many-flowered, cylindrical to corymbose, dense to lax, upper flowers sometimes sterile or aborted; peduncle erect to suberect, sometimes subtended by a leaf-like sheath; bracts minute, solitary, at the base of a single pedicel; pedicels short to long, erect to spreading, articulated at the apex
Flowers
Flowers small, regular, rotate, campanulate or triangular, opening in the sun; tepals in 2 whorls of 3, connate at the base, subequal to equal or dimorphic, white, pink, yellow or green and often with a darker coloured midnerve, persistent
Androecium
Stamens 6, hypogynous, joined to the base of the tepals; filaments filiform to broadly lanceolate, white, yellow, orange or purple blotched; anthers, dorsifixed, versatile, subglobose to oval, introrse
Gynoecium
Ovary superior, sessile, with 3 locules, each with 2-6 axile ovules; style terete; stigma apical, small
Fruits
Fruit a loculicidal capsule, turbinate to ovoid
Seeds
Seeds oval to comma-shaped, densely covered with hairs, silvery white when fresh, turning brown with age
[FWTA]

Agavaceae, F.N. Hepper. Flora of West Tropical Africa 3:1. 1968

Habit
Rootstock a rhizome; stem short or well developed
Leaves
Leaves usually crowded on or at the base of the stem often thick and fleshy, entire or with prickly teeth on the margin
Flowers
Flowers bisexual, polygamous or dioecious, racemose to paniculate or subcapitate, sometimes in a very large thyrse, bracteate
Perianth
Perianth segments free or united; corona never present
Androecium
Stamens 6, inserted at the base of the lobes or on the tube; filaments filiform or thickened, free; anthers introrse, 2-locular, opening lengthwise
Gynoecium
Ovary superior or inferior, often beaked, 3-locular, with axile placentas; style slender Ovules numerous and superposed in two series to solitary
Fruits
Fruit a capsule or berry
Seeds
Seeds with fleshy endosperm
[FTEA]

Dracenaceae, Geoffrey Mwachala & Paul Mbugua, Flora of Tropical East Africa. 2007

Habit
Trees, shrubs or herbs
Leaves
Leaves alternate, rosulate, distichous or spirally arranged, sometimes in pseudo-whorls, sessile, the base often (semi-)amplexicaul, succulent or not; primary venation parallel
Inflorescences
Inflorescence usually a terminal panicle, occasionally appearing racemose by reduction of primary branches; pedicel of a peg-like basal part crowned by a distinct joint, and an obconical receptacle, persistent in fruit
Flowers
Flowers in irregular clusters, 1–several per cluster, subsessile, with a bract subtending each flower, fragrant, nocturnal; perianth tubular, with 6 spreading or recurving lobes
Stamens
Stamens 6, inserted in the throat, with inflated or filiform filaments; anthers dorsifixed, versatile, opening by lateral slits
Pistil
Ovary superior, free, globose, 3-celled; ovules erect, solitary in each of the three chambers; style filiform; stigma capitate
Fruits
Fruit a berry, 1–3-seeded
Seeds
Seeds rounded, bony, white.
[FTEA]

Hyacinthaceae, Brita Stedje, Ph.D.. Flora of Tropical East Africa. 1996

Habit
Herbs with bulbs
Leaves
Leaves in a basal rosette from the apex of the bulb or lacking, filiform, lanceolate or cordate, with or without spots, sometimes with papillae or hairs
Scape
Scape leafless
Inflorescences
Inflorescence most often a raceme or a spike, rarely much branched and complex, if much branched then leaves lacking or strongly reduced
Flowers
Flowers greenish to white or yellowish, purplish to purple or blue, often with a green or dark midrib
Perianth
Perianth-segments 6, free or fused into a shorter or longer tube
Gynoecium
Ovaries with 1-many ovules per locule
Fruits
Fruit a loculicidal capsule, rarely schizocarpous
Seeds
Seeds black and subglobular or flattened, sometimes winged

Images

Asparagaceae Juss. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Gen. Pl. [Jussieu] 40. 1789 [4 Aug 1789] (1789)

Accepted by

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

Sources

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 2018. 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