J Syst Evol ›› 1981, Vol. 19 ›› Issue (2): 168-178.

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Morphology of the family Rhoipteleaceae in relation to its systematic position

Chang Chin-Yu   

  1.  (Institute of Botany, Academia Sinica)
  • Online:1981-05-18 Published:1981-05-18

Abstract: The present paper is devoted to a study of the basic morphological and anatomical characteristics of the endemic family Rhoipteleaceae from China. The fundamental pattern of the morphological and anatomical characteristics of the Rhoipteleaceae is similar to those of the Juglandaceae in wood anatomy, resinous peltate scales, apetaly, bicarpellate pistils, one-seeded fruits and exalbuminous seeds. Whereas Rhoipteleaceae has stipules; perfect flowers with superior 2-loculed ovaries, anatropous ovules and two integuments; vessel elements of the secondary xylem with the scalariform perforation, and 2–8 (18) pores on the oblique plate being observable; vascular rays heterocellular and tricolporate pollen. The above characteristics–at least most of them, agree pretty well with those depicted by Manning in his “Pre-Juglandaceae”. It is quite possible that the Juglandaceae is derived from “Pre-Juglandaceae”by way of the Rhoipteleaceae, as the morphological and anatomical features as indicated above tend to show that the Rhoipteleaceae is more primitive than Juglandaceae. The Rhoipteleaceae was previously considered as related to the Betulaceae or Ulmaceae, a view, which the present study does not prove to be acceptable. Both Takhtajan (1969) and Cronquist (1968) pointed out that the Juglandales, Urticales, Myricales, Fagales are all direct derivatives from the Hamamelidales. However, since the Rhoipteleaceae is simillar to the Betulaceae in wood anatomy and pollen, it seems that there too could have certain relationships between the Rhoipteleaceae and the Betula-ceae in the course of evolution.

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