Araliaceae

Araliaceae is a moderately sized family with about 50 genera and 1350 species globally. Members can be found in both tropical and subtropical regions of both the Northern and Southern hemisphere. They can either be herbaceous or woody with shrub, liana, and tree habits. The leaves are pinnately or palmately compound. Flowers are often small and are held in panicles. The family is related to the carrot family Apiaceae and recent molecular systematic studies moved the herbaceous semiaquatic herb Hydrocotyle from Apiaceae to Araliaceae. Culturally significant geophytes such as Ginseng (Panax) belong to this family. Other ornamentals such as English and Algerian ivy (Hedera helix and H. canariensis, respectively) also belong to this family. The family contains it's own set of parasitic plants such as Orobanche hederae which parasitizes only Hedera spp.


Return to the PBS wiki Families page
Page last modified on April 18, 2009, at 07:49 AM