Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Advanced Search

Key to the Families of Zingiberales

1. Lacticifers present; flowers unisexual, plants monoecious Suborder Musineae W. J. Kress
Musaceae A. L. Jussieu)
Family Musaceae
1. Lacticifers absent; flowers bisexual Go to 2  

2. Ovary with extensive prolongation to form a solid tube; all petals not fused; median stamen of outer whorl fertile; median stamen of inner whorl absent Suborder Strelitziineae W. J. Kress Go to 3  
2. Ovary with short or no prolongation; all petals fused at least at base; median stamen of outer whorl modified, sterile; median stamen of inner whorl present Go to 4  

3. Root stele with medullary vessels and phloem; stem woody; two lateral petals fused to enclose anthers; median petal not forming labellum; floral nectaries present Strelitziaceae Hutchinson Family Strelitziaceae
3. Root stele polyarc; stem not woody; two lateral petals not so fused; median petal free, forming labellum; floral nectaries absent Lowiaceae Ridley Family Lowiaceae

4. Two arcs of air canals in leaf axis; raphide sacs present; five fertile stamens; lateral stamens of inner and outer whorls fertile; no perisperm Suborder Heliconiineae W. J. Kress
Heliconiaceae Nakai)
Family Heliconiaceae
4. One arc of air canals in leaf axis; raphide sacs absent; one fertile stamen; lateral stamens of inner and outer whorls sterile staminodes; perisperm present Suborder Zingiberineae W. K. Kress Go to 5  

5. Ligule present at juncture of leaf blade and petiole; flowers zygomorphic; sepals fused at base; style unmodified, situated between anther sacs; anther tetrasporangiate; endosperm helobial Superfamily Zingiberariae W. J. Kress Go to 6  
5. Ligule absent; flowers asymmetric; sepals free; style modified, separated from anther; anther bisporangiate; endosperm nuclear Superfamily Cannariae W. J. Kress Go to 7  

6. Phyllotaxy distichous; aromatic oils present in vegetative body; inner lateral staminodes fused into a labellum (median staminode absent) Zingiberaceae Martynov Family Zingiberaceae
6. Phyllotaxy spirally arranged; aromatic oils not present in vegetative body; all five staminodes fused into a labellum Costaceae Nakai Family Costaceae

7. No mucilage cells in stems; pulvinus present; sigmoid lateral veins with evenly spaced cross veins in leaves; terminal pairs of enantiomorphic flowers; inner stamens modified into cucullate and callous staminodes; style not petaloid; single ovule per locule Marantaceae R. Brown Family Marantaceae
7. Mucilage cells in stems; pulvinus absent; lateral veins oblique in leaves; petaloid style; flower pairs not enantiomorphic; inner staminodes and style petaloid; multiple ovules per locule Cannaceae A. L. Jussieu Family Cannaceae

[ TOP ]