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Family: Garryaceae

Kingdom: Plantae Rank: Family Parent: Cornales Status: Valid

Common Names:

  • SILKTASSEL FAMILY - English, United States of America

Morphological Description

Family Recognition in the Field: The only nc TX species is an evergreen shrub or small tree with opposite, simple, entire leaves and small, inconspicuous, apetalous, unisexual flowers in catkin-like pendulous inflorescences; fruit a blue drupe.


Notes: A very small family of 1 genus and 13 species of w North America, Central America, and the West Indies. They are dioecious evergreen trees and shrubs with 9 highly toxic alkaloids. The Garryaceae were previously thought to be closely related to Cornaceae and were sometimes treated in that family (e.g., Correll & Johnston 1970; Hatch et al. 1990); however, recent molecular studies (Xiang et al. 1993) did not support a close relationship to Cornaceae. (subclass Rosidae)