Colchicaceae or the Colchicum family.

Genera in this family were formerly in Liliaceae. The family is worldwide with genera and species in Australia, South Africa, Europe, and Asia. Plants in this family are usually cormous, but sometimes tuberous or rhizomatous. Leaves are few, mainly basal or borne on the stiff, erect stem. Some species are climbers (stem climbers and tendril climbers.) The flowers are in a raceme or solitary with 6 tepals, free or united in a tube, 6 stamens, and a superior 3 chambered ovary with a 3-branched stigma. Fruit is a capsule and seeds are generally not hairy or winged.

Recent taxonomic changes by Manning, Forest & Vinnersten (2007) and Vinnersten & Manning (2007) suggest that most of the genera belong to good groupings. They suggest that Littonia be included in Gloriosa and Androcymbium be included in Colchicum. Evidence for changing Littonia into Gloriosa is strong, but inclusion of Androcymbium into the already large genus Colchicum is made for "practical" reasons. The author state that there were no morphological characters that separated certain groups of Androcymbium found by molecular evidence. We await a full revision of the genus Androcymbium and until such a revision occurs, we will keep the genus Androcymbium separated from Colchicum based on their morphological classification.

Genera of Colchicaceae on the PBS wiki
Androcymbium Baeometra Bulbocodium Burchardia
Colchicum Disporum Gloriosa Littonia
Merendera Ornithoglossum Sandersonia Uvularia

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Page last modified on May 06, 2010, at 03:54 AM