Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Shrubs or small trees, monoecious; roots often tuberous with large quantities of starch; indumentum of simple hairs. Leaves alternate, simple or deeply palmately 3 - 5 (- 11 or more) lobed, sometimes almost digitate or upper ones entire, peltate, 5-nerved at base, long-petioled; stipules small, persistent or caducous. Inflorescences terminal, panicles or simple racemes, mostly with a few lowest flowers female and long-pedicelled, the upper male flowers more numerous and short-pedicelled; calyx campanulate, 5-lobed; lobes imbricate, inrolled along margins; petals absent; disc flat, fleshy, glandular. Male flowers: disc glands 10, radially arranged; stamens 10, in two whorls of 5 each, placed more or less outside or sometimes in between the disc glands, somewhat exserted; the inner filaments shorter and thinner; anthers oblong, versatile, sub basally dorsifixed, 2-loculed; connective with hairy prolonged apex; pistillode columnar, small. Female flowers: calyx-lobes 5-nerved; disc annular; ovary 3-loculed, each 1-ovuled; style short, 3-branched; stigmas apically broadening, often repeatedly branched, thin, folded. Fruits schizocarpic.

Neotropical, native of South America, ca 107 species; 2 in India, introduced, cultivated and naturalised or naturally regenerating.

Literature. VAN WELZEN, P. C., Q. D. NGUYEN & R. C. K. CHUNG 1997. A revision of the introduced species of Manihot Miller (Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia. Rheedea 7: 77 - 85.


1a. Shrubs, 1 - 2 m high, rarely up to 4 m tall; leaves epeltate or slightly peltate for less than 3 mm from margin; lobes narrowly oblanceolate; flowers in lax racemes; calyx 7 - 12 mm long; ovary with 6 longitudinal ridges; fruits 6-winged; seeds up to 12 mm long 1. Manihot esculenta
b. Trees, 5 - 10 m tall; leaves distinctly peltate for at least 4 - 5 mm from margin; lobes broadly obovate; flowers in panicles; calyx 15 - 18 mm long; ovary smooth; fruits not winged; seeds more than 12 mm long 2. Manihot glaziovii

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