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Families

M O N O C O T S

Sepals and petals usually in 3s; leaf venation usually parallel or nearly so (a few notable exceptions).

 

AMARYLLIDACEAE:

1. Corolla yellow...Hypoxis

1. Corolla white...Zephyranthes

 

ARACEAE:

1. Leaves compound...Arisaema

1. Leaves simple...2

2. Spathe purplish...Symplocarpus

2. Spathe green...Peltandra

 

COMMELINACEAE: Tradescantia

 

CYPERACEAE: Carex

 

IRIDACEAE:

1. Flowers > 3 cm wide...Iris

1. Flowers < 3 cm wide...Sisyrinchium

 

JUNCACEAE:

1. Flowers and fruits brown...Luzula

1. Flowers and fruits green...Juncus

 

LILIACEAE:

1. Stem leaves whorled...2

1. Stem leaves alternate, opposite, or lacking...3

2. Leaves in 1 whorl...Trillium

2. Leaves in > 1 whorl...Medeola

3. Stems lacking leaves or leafy mainly near base; basal leaves usually present...4

3. Stems leafy throughout; basal leaves usually absent...10

4. Flower 1 per stem...5

4. Flowers >1 per stem...6

5. Petals yellow; basal leaves > 10 mm wide...Erythronium

5. Petals white or bluish; basal leaves < 10 mm wide...Ipheion

6. Inflorescence an umbel...Allium

6. Inflorescence a spike or raceme...7

7. Perianth blue-purple...Muscari

7. Perianth white or mainly so...8

8. Flowers imperfect...Chamaelirium

8. Flowers perfect...9

9. Stem leafless...Ornithogalum

9. Stem with one-a few leaves...Amianthium

10. Inflorescence terminal...Smilacina

10. Inflorescence or solitary flowers axillary...11

11. Flowers in successive axils; fruit a berry...Polygonatum

11. Flowers not in successive axils; fruit a capsule...Uvularia

 

ORCHIDACEAE:

1. Leaves absent at flowering, dull green above, purple below...Tipularia

1. Leaves present at flowering, not colored as above...2

2. Leaves green with white reticulations...Goodyera

2. Leaves lacking white reticulations...3

3. Some perianth parts white, others pink...Orchis

3. Perianth coloration not as above...4

4. Leaves whorled...Isotria

4. Leaves basal or alternate...5

5. Lower petal saccate...Cypripedium

5. Lower petal not saccate...Liparis

 

POACEAE:

Grasses are described by a complex set of terminology.  The genera you might find blooming and in fruit include Agrostis, Aira, Anthoxanthum, Bromus, Dactylis, Danthonia, Festuca, Glyceria, Holcus, Hordeum, Hystrix, Lolium, Melica, Poa, Sphenopholis, and Stipa.

 

D I C O T S

Sepals and petals usually in 4s or 5s; carpels frequently 3 or 5, sometimes > 10; stamen usually 3 or 5, sometimes >10; leaf venation usually pinnate or palmate

 

ANNONACEAE: Asimina

 

APIACEAE:

1. Flowers yellow...Zizia

1. Flowers white...2

2. Compound umbel > 2 cm broad...Daucus

2. Compound umbel < 2 cm broad...Chaerophyllum

 

APOCYNACEAE:

1. Erect herb...Apocynum

1. Climbing or trailing vine...2

2. Trailing vine; flowers blue, purple, or pinkish...Vinca

2. Climbing vine; flowers yellow...Trachelospermum

 

ARALIACEAE: Aralia

 

ARISTOLOCHIACEAE:

1. Leaves pubescent, not aromatic when broken or only slightly so...Asarum

1. Leaves glabrous, distinctly aromatic when crushed...Hexastylis

 

ASTERACEAE:

1. Leaves white tomentose beneath...2

1. Leaves not white tomentose beneath...4

2. Leaves apically rounded with short, distinct point...Facelis

2. Leaves apically rounded-acute, lacking distinct point...3

3. Basal leaves > 2 times as wide as stem leaves...Antennaria

3. Basal leaves < 2 times as wide as stem leaves or absent...Gnaphalium

4. Heads of both disk and ray flowers...5

4. Heads of ray flowers only or disk-discoid flowers only...12

5. Ray flowers white, pinkish, bluish, purplish...6

5. Ray flowers yellow...10

6. Heads < 3 cm broad (ray tip to ray tip)...7

6. Heads > 3 cm broad (ray tip to ray tip)...8

7. Leaves finely dissected; pappus absent...Achillea

7. Leaves entire, toothed, or lobed; pappus of bristles...Erigeron

8. Leaves finely dissected...Anthemis

8. Leaves entire, toothed, or lobed...9

9. Petiole lobed at base; disk yellow...Chrysanthemum

9. Petiole not lobed at base; disk brown black...Echinacea

10. Pappus a united cartilaginous crown...Chrysogonum

10. Pappus of bristles...11

11. Stem leaves few, opposite; pappus yellowish-white...Arnica

11. Stem leaves more than a few, alternate; pappus white...Senecio

12. Head of disk-discoid flowers only...13

12. Head of ray flowers only...14

13. Outer bracts spine-tipped...Carduus

13. Outer bracts not spine-tipped...Centaurea

14. Ray flowers blue or white...Cichorium

14. Ray flowers yellow...15

15. Nutlet flattened...16

15. Nutlet not flattened...17

16. Fruit apically truncate...Sonchus

16. Fruit apically beaked or tapered...Lactuca

17. Nutlet with beak > 5mm long...18

17. Nutlet beakless or with beak < 5mm long...20

18. Longest bracts bilobed or widest at apex...Pyrrhopappus

18. Longest bracts tapered to apex...19

19. Stem unbranched; pappus capillary...Taraxacum

19. Stem branched; pappus plumose...Hypochoeris

20. Bracts all of one length...Krigia

20. Bracts of several lengths...Hieracium

 

BERBERIDACEAE: Podophyllum

 

BETULACEAE:

1. Fruit subtended by woody scale...Alnus

1. Fruit subtended by leafy scales...Corylus

 

BIGNONIACEAE:

1. Petals uniformly orange; leaflets > 4...Campsis

1. Petals maroon and yellow; leaflets < 4...Anisostichus

 

BORAGINACEAE:

1. Petals blue-violet...Cynoglossum

1. Petals white-pale bluish...2

2. Style unbranched...Myosotis

2. Style branches 2...Lithospermum

 

 

BRASSICACEAE:

1. Corolla distinctly yellow...2

1. Corolla white, cream-pale yellow, green, pink, or purplish...4

2. Petals lt. yellow; fruit contracted between seeds...Raphanus

2. Petals dk. yellow; fruit not contracted between seeds...3

3. Leaves lustrous...Barbarea

3. Leaves not lustrous...Brassica

4. Stem and basal leaves entire or toothed, not lobed nor

divided...5

4. Stem leaves (at least lower ones) and/or basal leaves lobed/divided...12

5. Flowers > 8 mm broad...Cardamine

5. Flowers < 8 mm broad...6

6. Stem leaf length < 2X width...7

6. Stem leaf length > 2X width...8

7. Fruit < 1 cm long...Draba

7. Fruit > 1 cm long...Cardamine

8. Fruit triangular...Capsella

8. Fruit round, elliptic, ovate, or elongated...9

9. Fruit length < width or only slightly longer...10

9. Fruit length distinctly > width...11

10. Fruit winged...Lepidium

10. Fruit wingless...Camelina

11. Fruit < 1 cm long...Draba

11. Fruit > 1 cm long...Cardamine

12. Leaves digitately (palmately) lobed/divided...Cardamine

12. Leaves pinnately lobed/divided...13

13. Fruit length > 3X width...14

13. Fruit length < 3X width...15

14. Fruit with cross walls between the seeds...Raphanus

14. Fruit lacking cross walls between the seeds...Cardamine

15. Fruit not lobed, triangular...Capsella

15. Fruit 2-lobed, each lobe round...Coronopus

 

CAMPANULACEAE: Specularia

 

CAPRIFOLIACEAE:

1. Plant a vine...Lonicera

1. Plant a shrub...2

2. Leaves simple...Viburnum

2. Leaves compound...Sambucus

 

CARYOPHYLLACEAE:

1. Petals lacking...2

1. Petals present...3

2. Sepals acute; fruit 1-seeded...Scleranthus

2. Sepals obtuse; fruit several-seeded...Sagina

3. Petals pink, red, or purple...4

3. Petals white...5

4. Petals shorter than sepals...Agrostemma

4. Petals longer than sepals...Dianthus

5. Leaves whorled...Spergula

5. Leaves opposite...6

6. Petals deeply notched...7

6. Petals not notched or only slightly so...8

7. Styles 5; plant pubescent throughout...Cerastium

7. Styles 3; plant mainly glabrous...Stellaria

8. Inflorescence an umbel...Holosteum

8. Inflorescence not an umbel...9

9. Petals inconspicuous...Sagina

9. Petals conspicuous...Arenaria

 

CELASTRACEAE: Euonymus

 

CRASSULACEAE: Diamorpha

 

DIAPENSIACEAE: Galax

 

ELAEAGNACEAE: Elaeagnus

 

ERICACEAE:

1. Plant an herb...Chimaphila

1. Plant a shrub...2

2. Fruit inferior...3

2. Fruit superior...4

3. Leaves glandular-dotted beneath; fruit 10-seeded...Gaylussacia

3. Leaves not glandular-dotted beneath; fruit > 10-seeded...Vaccinium

4. Corolla irregular...Rhododendron

4. Corolla regular...5

5. Inflorescences terminal corymbs or fascicles...Kalmia

5. Inflorescences axillary racemes or panicles...6

6. Calyx pubescent, lacking subtending bractlets...Lyonia

6. Calyx glabrous, with two subtending bractlets...Leucothoe

 

EUPHORBIACEAE: Euphorbia

 

FABACEAE:

1. Plant a shrub/small tree; flowers produced before leaves...Cercis

1. Plant a vine or herb; flowers produced with or after leaves...2

2. Leaves with  3 leaflets...3

2. Leaves with > 3 leaflets...4

3. Terminal leaflet lacking stalk (petiolule)...Trifolium

3. Terminal leaflet with stalk...Medicago

4. Plant woody...Wisteria

4. Plant  herbaceous...5

5. Leaves with tendrils...Vicia

5. Leaves lacking tendrils...Tephrosia

 

FUMARIACEAE:

1. Corolla yellow...Corydalis

1. Corolla pink or white...Dicentra

 

GENTIANACEAE: Obolaria

 

GERANIACEAE:

1. Leaves palmately lobed or compound...Geranium

1. Leaves pinnately compound...Erodium

 

HIPPOCASTANACEAE: Aesculus

 

LAMIACEAE:

1. Anther-bearing stamen 2...Salvia

1. Anther-bearing stamen 4...2

2. Some or all stems trailing on ground...3

2. All stems erect...4

3. Leaves cordate...Glecoma

3. Leaves tapering basally...Ajuga

4. Petals magenta...Lamium

4. Petals blue-purple...Prunella

 

LAURACEAE:

1. At least some leaves lobed...Sassafras

1. All leaves unlobed...Lindera

 

LOGANIACEAE: Gelsemium

 

MAGNOLIACEAE: Magnolia

 

OLEACEAE:

1. Petal length > 5 X width...Chionanthus

1. Petal length < 5 X width...Ligustrum

 

ONAGRACEAE: Oenothera

 

OXALIDACEAE: Oxalis

 

PAPAVERACEAE: Sanguinaria

 

POLEMONIACEAE: Phlox

 

POLYGONACEAE: Rumex

 

PORTULACACEAE:

1. Ovary partly inferior...Portulaca

1. Ovary completely superior...2

2. Sepals persistent; leaves opposite...Claytonia

2. Sepals deciduous; leaves alternate...Talinum

 

PLANTAGINACEAE: Plantago

 

RANUNCULACEAE:

1. Plant a shrub; inflorescence a drooping panicle...Xanthorhiza

1. Plant an herb; inflorescence not as above...2

2. Perianth conspicuously spurred...Aquilegia

2. Perianth not spurred...3

3. Mature inflorescence > 10 cm long...Cimicifuga

3. Mature inflorescence < 10 cm long...4

4. Leaves ternately compound; leaflet apices acute...Actaea

4. Leaves lacking one or both features noted above...5

5. Both calyx and corolla present (or apparently so)...6

5. Either calyx or corolla lacking...7

6. Petals yellow...Ranunculus

6. Petals (actually sepals that look like petals) white-bluish...Hepatica

7. Inflorescence an umbel...Thalictrum

7. Inflorescence not an umbel...8

8. Perianth leathery...Clematis

8. Perianth not leathery...Anemone

 

RHAMNACEAE: Ceanothus

 

ROSACEAE: 

1. Plant a shrub...2

1. Plant an herb...4

2. Ovary inferior...Amelanchier

2. Ovary superior...3

3. Gynoecium of fused carpels; single ovary surrounded by floral cup (hypanthium)...Prunus

3. Gynoecium of many unfused carpels; numerous ovaries of single flower superior...Rubus

4. Sepals interspersed with sepaloid bracts...5

4. Sepals not interspersed with bracts...Waldsteinia

5. Bracts narrowing towards apex, entire...Potentilla

5. Bracts widest at apex, toothed...Duchesnia

 

RUBIACEAE:

1. Leaves in whorls of 4 or more...2

1. Leaves opposite or in whorls of 3...3

2. Sepals lacking...Galium

2. Sepals present...Sherardia

3. Stem erect-nearly erect...Houstonia

3. Stem trailing on ground...Mitchella

 

SALICACEAE: Salix

 

SANTALACEAE:

1. Herb; flowers perfect...Commandra

1. Shrub; flowers imperfect...Nestronia

 

SAURURACEAE: Saururus

 

SAXIFRAGACEAE:

1. Plant a shrub...Itea

1. Plant an herb...2

2. Inflorescence a raceme...Tiarella

2. Inflorescence a panicle...3

3. Stamen 5...Heuchera

3. Stamen 10...Saxifraga

 

SCROPHULARIACEAE:

1. Corolla only slightly irregular...Veronica

1. Corolla distinctly irregular...2

2. Stem leaves opposite...Penstemon

2. Stem leaves alternate...3

3. Corolla blue, basally spurred...Linaria

3. Corolla yellow, not spurred basally...Pedicularis

 

STAPHYLEACEAE: Staphylea

 

STYRACACEAE: Styrax

 

THYMELIACEAE: Dirca

 

VALERIANACEAE: Valerianella

 

VIOLACEAE:

1. Petals green...Hybanthus

1. Petals white, blue, yellow or purple...Viola