| Authors||C.F. van Beusekom, Th.P.M. van de Water|
|Journal||Flora Malesiana - Series 1, Spermatophyta|
|Abstract||Trees, scandent shrubs or woody climbers. Leaves alternate or spirally arranged, penninerved, simple or imparipinnate, the leaflets in the latter case opposite on often somewhat swollen nodes of the rachis; exstipulate. Flowers small, bisexual, rarely polygamo-dioecious, in terminal or axillary racemose panicles, or cymose: paniculately arranged cymes, or these reduced to solitary axillary flowers. Sepals (3—)5, imbricate, free or ± connate at the base, equal or unequal. Petals (4—)5, mostly opposite the sepals (rarely alternate: Ophiocaryon spp., South America). Stamens (including staminodes) 5, opposite the petals, all polliniferous (Sabia) or only 2 inner ones opposite the reduced petals polliniferous and the other 3 staminodial. Disk small, annular, surrounding the base of the ovary. Ovary of 2(—3) carpels united to form a compound superior ovary, carpels very rarely free in the apical part, in that case tapering to 3 short styles with a capitate stigma; otherwise normally a short, cylindric or conical style; cells 2(—3), each with 1 or 2 pendulous or horizontal, axile hemitropous, unitegmic, crassinucellar ovules. Fruit either 1-celled or 2-coccous, drupaceous or dry, indehiscent; endocarp often wrinkled. Endosperm scanty or wanting. Embryo with a curved radicle and 2 folded or coiled cotyledons.|
Distribution. Three genera: Sabia Indo-Malesian, from the S. Deccan and Kashmir to S. Japan, throughout Malesia as far as the Solomons; Meliosma with a similar range but also occurring in tropical America; Ophiocaryon in the Neotropics. The family is absent in Australia and Africa.
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