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Lythraceae: Myrtle family

The family Lythraceae consists of about 500 species in 24 genera (Carr). This is the myrtle family. Most of the species are tropical species but some, like the Crepe Myrtles (Lagerstroemia spp) can be grown on temperate areas as well. Others like purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) are extremely invasive.


Systematics: This family usually as 4-6 petals that are typically crumpled. The sepals are lobes in the perigynous zone. The stamen are often twice that of the petals and are in two whorls, one of which is longer than the other. The pistil is compound with 2-4 carpels, a united stigma and style and a superior ovary.

Specimens List

Crepe Myrtle (Lagerstroemia spp)

Composed of about 50 species native to Australia and East Asia.



Floral Diagram


Pomegranate (Punica granatum)

Native from Iran to the Himalayas, the word means apple-seeded.


Purple Loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria)

In the northern U.S. this is an extremely invasive and problematic weed.

Links to more information

Dr. Carr's UH Botany Lythraceae family.

 
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