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Anacampserotaceae Nyffeler & Eggli in Taxon 59: 232. 2010 sec. Nyffeler & Eggli 2010


Herbae vel suffrutices succulentae perennes axillis foliorum
pilis axillaribus vel squamis albis foliis obtegentibus instructis;
flores tricarpellati; fructi capsulae elaboratae partes exocarpi et endocarpi separandae, partes exocarpi caducis; seminis pelliculis siccis pallidis instructae.A


A family with three genera and around 36 species mainly distributed in the southern and eastern parts of Africa, but also found in North America, South America, and Australia (Nyffeler & Eggli 2010). The species of this family are traditionally considered members of Portulacaceae; however, molecular phylogenetic studies have shown that the traditional Portulacaceae are not monophyletic (Hershkovitz & Zimmer 1997; Applequist & Wallace 2001; Nyffeler 2007; Nyffeler & Eggli 2010; Ocampo & Columbus 2010). Nyffeler & Eggli (2010) proposed the segregation of the traditional Portulacaceae into four families (Anacampserotaceae, Montiaceae, Portulacaceae, and Talinaceae) based on morphological and molecular data. In this context, the Anacampserotaceae are recognized by their capsules with loculicidal dehiscence whose endocarp valves form a basket-like structure and by their seeds whose testa layers separate from each other (Nyffeler & Eggli 2010).B


Small shrubs to thick-stemmed perennial herbs, mucilaginous (except Grahamia), sometimes with a basal fleshy caudex or tuberous main root; leaves spiral, succulent to very succulent, terete to globose, rarely flattened, glabrous or tomentose; axils with hairs, bristles, or a pergamentaceous scale (Anacampseros sect. Avonia (Fenzl) Gerbaulet); inflorescence lateral or terminal few-flowered thyrsoids, sometimes with contracted internodes, sometimes with scorpioid partial inflorescences; flowers small to medium-sized, bisexual, usually showy; sepaloids 2, fleshy, persistent and becoming dry in fruit; petaloids 5; stamens 5–25; ovary superior, of 3 united carpels; calyptra formed by the perianth remains and stamens persistent at fruiting stage (Grahamia, Talinopsis) or deciduous as an entity (Anacampseros); fruits loculicidally dehiscent capsules
with the caducous exocarp separating from the endocarp
(except Grahamia, Gerbaulet, 1992: 506; Hershkovitz, 1993),
and the endocarp valves forming a small basket; seeds usually somewhat angular and voluminous, usually pale-colored to white, without strophiola or elaiosome, testa two-layered, the outer testa layer usually partially or almost completely separating from the inner layer of the seed; embryo parallel to the perisperm and rather straight (Franz, 1908; Kowal, 1961).A

Distribution (General)

Southern and eastern Africa, Australia, Argentina, Bolivia, Mexico, United States. (Nyffeler, R. & Eggli, U. 2010: Disintegrating Portulacaceae: A new familial classification of the suborder Portulacineae (Caryophyllales) based on molecular and morphological data. – Taxon 59: 227-240)A


A. Nyffeler, R. & Eggli, U. 2010: Disintegrating Portulacaceae: A new familial classification of the suborder Portulacineae (Caryophyllales) based on molecular and morphological data. – Taxon 59: 227-240
B. 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