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Caryophyllaceae Juss., Gen. Pl.: 299. 1789, nom. cons. sec. APG IV [Angiosperm Phylogeny Group] 20161 wfo-7000000117
      Type: Caryophyllus Mill., nom. illeg.
  • 1. APG IV [Angiosperm Phylogeny Group] 2016: APG IV: An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants. – Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 181(1): 1-20..


A family of chiefly opposite-leaved herbs comprising about 100 genera and 3000 species. The family is widely distributed in north-temperate, montane and alpine areas with a centre of diversity in the eastern Mediterranean and Irano-Turanean region, while presence in the tropics and the Southern Hemisphere is limited and mostly at higher elevations (Bittrich 1993c; Rabeler & Hartman 2005a). Several taxa (esp. species of Dianthus, Gypsophila, and Silene) are important in the horticultural trade while others (e.g., Stellaria media (L.) Vill.) have become widely known weedy taxa.
The number of genera included here is over 10% higher than most recent estimates (Bittrich 1993c; Rabeler & Hartman 2005a; Harbaugh & al. 2010), reflecting the results of recent molecular studies on large genera (esp. Minuartia; Dillenberger & Kadereit 2014; Gypsophila, Madhani & al., 2018) as well as retention of several genera (e.g., Xerotia) that may eventually disappear.
The family is monophyletic as circumscribed by Bittrich (1993c), although the “traditional” division into three subfamilies (Bittrich 1993c; Pax & Hoffmann 1934) based on stipule, petal, sepal, and fruit features does not provide monophyletic groups and should be replaced with the tribe-based scheme presented by Harbaugh & al. (2010) and confirmed by subsequent studies (e.g. Greenberg & Donoghue 2011).A


Alsineae Lam. & DC., Syn. Pl. Fl. Gall.: 392. 1806
Adenonema Bunge
Cerastium L.
Dichodon (Bartl. ex Rchb.) Rchb.
Hartmaniella M.L.Zhang & Rabeler
Holosteum Dill. Ex L.
Lepyrodiclis Fenzl
Mesostemma Vved.
Moenchia Ehrh.
Nubelaria M.T.Sharples & E.A.Tripp
Odontostemma Benth. ex G.Don
Pseudostellaria Pax
Rabelera M.T.Sharples & E.A.Tripp
Schizotechium (Fenzl) Rchb.
Shivparvatia Pusalkar & D.K.Singh
Stellaria L.

Arenarieae Kitt., Taschenb. Fl. Deutschl., ed. 2, 2: 981. 1844
Arenaria L.
Brachystemma D.Don
Moehringia L.

Caryophylleae Lam. & DC., Syn. Pl. Fl. Gall.: 386. 1806
Acanthophyllum C.A.Mey.
Balkana Madhani & Zarre
Bolanthus (Ser.) Rchb.
Cyathophylla Bocquet & Strid
Dianthus L.
Gypsophila L.
Heterochroa Bunge
Petroana Madhani & Zarre
Petrorhagia (Ser.) Link
Pleioneura Rech.f.
Psammophiliella Ikonn.
Psammosilene W.C.Wu & C.Y.Wu
Saponaria L.
Yazdana A.Pirani & Noroozi

Corrigioleae Dumort., Fl. Belg.: 86. 1827
Corrigiola L.
Telephium L.

Eremogoneae Rabeler & W.L.Wagner in Int. J. Plant Sci. 171(2): 196. 2010
Eremogone Fenzl
Himgiria Pusalkar & D.K.Singh
Thylacospermum Fenzl

Paronychieae Dumort., Fl. Belg.: 86. 1827
Gymnocarpos Forssk.
Herniaria Tourn. Ex L.
Kabulia Bor & C.E.C.Fisch.
Paronychia Mill.
Philippiella Speg.

Polycarpaeae DC., Prodr. 3: 373. 1828
Achyronychia Torr. & A.Gray
Augustea Iamonico
Cardionema DC.
Cerdia Moc. & Sessé ex DC.
Chaetonychia (DC.) Sweet
Cometes L.
Dicheranthus Webb
Drymaria Willd. ex Schult.
Haya Balf.f.
Illecebrum Ruppius ex L.
Krauseola Pax & K.Hoffm.
Loeflingia L.
Microphyes Phil.
Ortegia Loefl.
Pirinia M.Král
Pollichia Aiton
Polycarpaea Lam.
Polycarpon Loefl.
Polytepalum Suess. & Beyerle
Pteranthus Forssk.
Pycnophyllum J.Rémy
Scopulophila M.E.Jones
Sphaerocoma T.Anderson
Stipulicida Michx.
Xerotia Oliv.

Sagineae J.Presl in Nowočeská Bibl. [Wšobecný Rostl.] 7: 1609, 1621. 1846
Bufonia L.
Colobanthus Bartl.
Drypis P.Micheli ex L.
Engellaria Iamonico
Facchinia Rchb.
Habrosia Fenzl
Mcneillia Dillenb. & Kadereit
Minuartia L.
Minuartiella Dillenb. & Kadereit
Pycnophyllopsis Skottsb.
Reicheella Pax
Sabulina Rchb.
Sagina L.
Thurya Boiss. & Balansa

Sclerantheae DC.
Cherleria L.
Honckenya Ehrh.
Mononeuria Rchb.
Pseudocherleria Dillenb. & Kadereit
Schiedea Cham. & Schltdl.
Scleranthus L.
Selleola Urb.
Triplateia Bartl.
Wilhelmsia Rchb.

Sileneae DC., Prodr. 1: 351. 1824
Agrostemma L.
Atocion Adans.
Eudianthe (Rchb.) Rchb.
Heliosperma (Rchb.) Rchb.
Lychnis L.
Melandrium Röhl.
Petrocoptis A.Braun ex Endl.
Silene L.
Viscaria Bernh.

Sperguleae Dumort.
Rhodalsine J.Gay
Spergula L.
Spergularia (Pers.) J.Presl & C.Presl

Calycotropis Turcz.
Dadjoua Parsa
Dolophragma Fenzl
Pentastemonodiscus Rech.f.


Genera and discussion notes:
Richard Rabeler
Bengt Oxelman (Sileneae)
Sabine von Mering

Markus Dillenberger
Georgia Fassou
Emanuele de Guacchio
Duilio Iamonico
Nadja Korotkova
Sabine von Mering
Anush Nersesyan
Richard K. Rabeler

Please refer to individual treatments for the accurate citation.


A. Hernández-Ledesma, P., Berendsohn, W. G., Borsch, T., von Mering, S., Akhani, H., Arias, S., Castañeda-Noa, I., Eggli, U., Eriksson, R., Flores-Olvera, H., Fuentes-Bazán, S., Kadereit, G., Klak, C., Korotkova, N., Nyffeler, R., Ocampo, G. & Ochoterena, H. 2015: A taxonomic backbone for the global synthesis of species diversity in the angiosperm order Caryophyllales. – Willdenowia 45(3): 281-383.