Alectryon Gaertn.

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New Trees

Family

  • Sapindaceae

Species in genus

Glossary

alternate
Attached singly along the axis not in pairs or whorls.
aril
Fleshy outgrowth produced at the base of a seed (as in e.g. Taxus). Often acts to attract animal seed-dispersal agents.
axillary
Situated in an axil.
calyx
(pl. calyces) Outer whorl of the perianth. Composed of several sepals.
capsule
Dry dehiscent fruit; formed from syncarpous ovary.
crenate
With rounded teeth at the edge.
dehiscent
Opening naturally. (Cf. indehiscent.)
dentate
With evenly triangular teeth at the edge. (Cf. crenate teeth rounded; serrate teeth saw-like.)
entire
With an unbroken margin.
glabrous
Lacking hairs smooth. glabrescent Becoming hairless.
hermaphrodite
Having both male and female parts in a single flower; bisexual.
imparipinnate
Odd-pinnate; (of a compound leaf) with a central rachis and an uneven number of leaflets due to the presence of a terminal leaflet. (Cf. paripinnate.)
pubescent
Covered in hairs.
serrate
With saw-like teeth at edge. serrulate Minutely serrate.
terete
Like a slender tapering cylinder.
unisexual
Having only male or female organs in a flower.

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New Trees

The 25 species of Alectryon occur in the Philippines, eastern Indonesia, New Guinea, Australia, New Caledonia, and in the Pacific from New Zealand to Hawaii (Edwards & Gadek 2001); only A. excelsus from New Zealand is known to be cultivated in our area. They are trees or shrubs with terete branchlets and evergreen paripinnate leaves. The leaflets are in one to eight pairs, opposite to alternate, pubescent to glabrous, with margins entire to dentate, serrate or crenate. Inflorescences are axillary, paniculate, racemose or thyrsoid. The flowers are unisexual or rarely hermaphrodite; the calyx has four to six lobes, the lobes pubescent on both surfaces; the petals, four to five (sometimes absent), are as long as or shorter than the calyx lobes; the (five to) eight stamens have hairy filaments. The fruit is a dehiscent capsule with a smooth or slightly warty surface; in several species, the capsule is brightly coloured. The single seed is black and partially covered by a bright red aril (Leenhouts 1988).

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