Botanical Survey of India | Flora of India

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Small trees or shrubs, evergreen or deciduous. Leaves simple, alternate, rarely opposite, entire or serrate, coriaceous, chartaceous or membranous; stipules minute, persistent or caducous or absent. Inflorescence solitary or fasciculate, in axillary cymes, racemes or pseudoumbels. Flowers unisexual (in case of dioecious plants) or bisexual, usually 4-merous, rarely 4 - 8-merous or up to 16-merous, small, regular, white. Sepals united at base, rarely free, imbricate, caducous or persistent, lacking in female flowers. Petals white, rotate, united at base in male flowers, free in female flowers. Stamens alternate with and adnate to the base of petals; filaments slender; anthers dorsifixed, dehiscing by longitudinal slits; pollen 3 - 4 calporate. Disc absent. Carpels 4 - 8, rarely more, united; ovary superior; locules as many as carpels; ovules 1 - 2 in each locule, pendulous; style absent or very short; stigma lobed, capitate or discoid. Fruit a drupe, with stones as many as carpels, 1-seeded.

Mostly in tropical, subtropical and warm temperate regions of both the hemispheres; 4 genera and ca 450 species; 1 genus and 26 species in India.

Literature. HU, SHIU - YING (1949). The genus Ilex in China. J. Arn. Arb. 30: 233· 344; 348 - 387. HU, SHIU-YING (1950). The genus Ilex in China. J. Arn. Arb. 31: 38 - 39; 214· 263. LOESENER, T. (1901). Monographia Aquifoliacearum. Nov. Acta Abh. Kais. Leop-Carol. Deuts. Akad. Naturf 78: 1-599. 15t. NASIR, Y.J. (1978). Aquifoliaceae. In: Nasir, E. & S.I. Ali, Fl. W. Pak. 124: 1-4.

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