Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Woody climbers; bark exfoliating on drying. Leaves ovate, subcordate, entire, sometimes dentate, rarely 3-lobed;; basal nerves 3 - 5(-7), palmate; lateral nerves distal, 1-3 pairs, sometimes with domatia or glandular patches; petioles swollen and geniculate at base. Inflorescences thyrsoid, psuedo-paniculate, pseudo-racemose or pseudo spicate. Male flowers: sepals free, rarely connate at base, 6, in 2 whorls; outer 3 smaller, subelliptic; petals 3 - 6, obovate, cuneate, with inrolled lateral edges, usually fleshy, glandular papillose; stamens 6, free. Female flowers: sepals and petals as in male ones; staminodes 6, subulate; carpels 3, curved-ellipsoid; style short; stigma peltate, reflexed, with short pointed lobes. Drupes 3, ovoid or ellipsoid; carpophore columnar; endocarp bony, dorsally convex, often verrucose or tuberculate, ventrally with central aperture; condyle present; endosperm usually ruminate, deeply intrusive.

Tropical Africa, Madagascar, Asia to Australia and Pacific Islands; ca 32 species, 4 species in India.


1a Stems strongly tuberculate; petals usually 3; endocarp 11 - 13 mm long 2. Tinospora crispa
b. Stems not tuberculate petals 6; endocarp 6 - 9 mm long 2
2a Male flowers on 8 - 12 mm long pedicels; drupes radiating from unbranched short columnar carpophore 3. Tinospora glabra
b. Male flowers on 2 - 5 mm long pedicels; drupes radiating from shortly 3-branched or 3-cornered carpophore 3
3a. Leaves glabrous, with glandular papillose patches (domatia) on lower surface; peduncles 4 - 7 mm long; endocarp very thinly bony, rounded at both ends 1. Tinospora cordifolia
b. Leaves hairy, usually lacking glandular patches; peduncles 8 - 11(-15) mm long; endocarp strongly bony, obtusely pointed at base, broadly keeled at apex 4. Tinospora sinensis

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