Every, J.L.R. (2009). Neotropical Fouquieriaceae.
Xerophytic shrubs, small trees or cactus-like columnar-stemmed succulents, long and short shoots present, long shoots armed with petiolar spines 2-45mm long, short shoots axillary to spines producing secondary clustered leaves that do not form spines. Leaves alternate , simple , clustered or single, succulent , exstipulate , almost sessile or petiolate , margins entire (sometimes revolute ), venation pinnate , both surfaces glabrous or slightly pubescent below. Inflorescences determinate, terminal or axillary , corymbs, panicles, racemes or spikes; rachis occasionally coloured (maroon, pink, purple, red or seldom green). Flowers actinomorphic , bisexual , showy, with two prophylls, sessile to pedicellate; calyx with 5 sepals, these free , imbricate , unequal (two outer lobes smaller than the inner three), persistent in fruit ; corolla 5 lobed , tubular, lobes imbricate ; stamens 10-16(-23), unevenly exserted , filaments free or slightly fused, slightly adnate to corolla base, occasionally with a puberulent , red-coloured basal ligulate spur, anthers dorsifixed, longitudinally dehiscent ; gynoecium syncarpous, ovary superior , carpels 3, locule 1, style 1, three-branched or entire , exserted or included in the corolla , ovules 6-16(20). Fruits loculicidal, dehiscent capsules with three, thick, coriaceous valves. Seeds 3-13(-18), winged (formed by a dense fringe of unicellular trichomes), flattened, 8-20mm in total length.
Distribution in the Neotropics
- Found growing outside the floristic region from southern U.S.A to the north Mexican desert in areas receiving 50-350 mm rainfall.
- Species in southern Mexico grow in deciduous tropical forest and arid tropical scrub averaging mostly 400-700mm rainfall.
Distinguishing characters (always present)
- Long, vicious spines on the longer stems.
- Primary leaves on the long shoots have long petioles.
- Flower colour varies amongst the taxa as do the number of stamens, the degree of corollalimb reflexion and their pattern of arrangement in the inflorescences.
- Intermediate between typical xeromorphic types (neither stem succulents nor shrubs).
- Woody or succulenthabit and also both woody and succulent parts on the same plant.
- Deciduous during drought periods between the rains (leaves can re appear in as little as 48hrs after rainfall).
- Short shoots axillary to spines producing secondary clustered (almost sessile) leaves which do not form spines.
- Brightly coloured flowers: yellow (subgen. Idria (Kellogg) Henrickson) or red (subgen. Fouquieria Kunth).
- Style three-branched (subgen. Fouquieria and subgen. Bronnia Kunth) or entire (subgen. Idria).
- General Description
Number of genera
1: Fouquieria Kunth with eleven species.
- Molecular analysis has complemented the work done by Henrickson (1972) regarding the intra-familial relationships, recognizing the three subgenera as monophyletic groups:-Subgenus Bronnia and Idria comprise the succulent species-Subgenus Fouquieria contains eight woody species
- Nash (1903) treated Fouquieria and Idria as separate genera, separating them by degrees of style fusion, stamen exerstion/inclusion, habit and corolla colour.
- Also known as the Ocotillo and Candlewood family.
- Trade in many species is restricted by CITES due to the small populations.
- Fouquieria owes its name to P.E. Fouquier, a Parisian professor of medicine.
- Both insect- (entomophilic) and bird- (ornithophilic) pollinated species are found, depending on the shape, size and colour of flowers.
- Trichomes at the base of the stamens are thought to achieve two things: firstly they reduce the evaporation of nectar from the base of the flower, and secondly they draw the nectar (by means of capillary & action) up and away from the sensitive ovary, protecting it from the beaks of hummingbirds.
- Waxy exudates from F. shrevei I.M.Johnst. are said to produce an agreeable aroma when burnt.
- F. splendens Engelm. has a dynamic range of uses from providing a quick snack in the form of the nectariferous flowers, to use as living fences and as a boot wax.
- F. columnaris (Kellogg) Curran is used to provide fence posts.
- The bark of F. macdougalii Nash has been used as a soap.
- The majority of the Fouquieriaceae species are endemic to mainland Mexico.
- Currently placed in the Ericales as sister to Polemoniaceae (Stevens 2008).
- Has been previously placed in the Violales sensu Cronquist.
- Included in its own order, the Fouquieriales sensu Takhatajan ex Reveal.
Henrickson J. 1972 A taxonomic revision of the Fouquieriaceae. Aliso 7. (4): 439-537
Heywood, V. H., Brummitt, R. K., Culham, A. and Seberg, O. (eds.). Flowering plant families of the world, p. 150. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Kubitzki, K. 2004a. Fouquieriaceae. Pp. 1-11. In Kubitzki, K. (ed.). Families and genera of vascular plants. Volume 6. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Springer-Verlag, Berlin.
Maas, P. J. M. & Westra, L. Y. Th. 2005. Neotropical Plant Families. 3rd ed. P. 247. A.R.G. Gantner Verlag K.G., Ruggell.
Nash, G. V. 1903. A Revision of the Family Fouquieriaceae. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 30(8): 449-459.
Schultheis, L. M. and Baldwin, B. G. 1999. Molecular Phylogenetics of Fouquieriaceae: Evidence from Nuclear rDNA ITS Studies. American Journal of Botany 86(4): 578-589.
Smith, N. 2004. Fouquieriaceae. Pp. 161-2. In: Smith, N., Mori, S. A., Henderson, A., Stevenson, D. W. and Heald, S. V. (eds.). Flowering Plants of the Neotropics. The New York Botanical Garden, Princeton University Press, Princeton.
Stevens, P. F. (2008). Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. Version 9 onwards. http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/research/APweb/.
Watson, L. and Dallwitz, M.J. (1992 onwards). The Families of Flowering Plants: Descriptions, Illustrations, Identification, and Information Retrieval. Version: 14th December 2000.
First published in Prodr. [A. P. de Candolle] 3: 349. 1828 (1828)
- APG IV (2016) http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/boj.12385
Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone
The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2021. 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
Milliken, W., Klitgard, B. and Baracat, A. (2009 onwards), Neotropikey - Interactive key and information resources for flowering plants of the Neotropics.