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Euphorbiaceae

Family Profile

Euphorbiaceae

Family Description

A family of about 300 genera and 7500 species, cosmopolitan but reaching its best development in tropical and subtropical areas.

Genera

Acalypha - A genus of more than 400 species, pantropical but also extending north and south of the tropics; six species occur naturally in Australia and two species have become naturalised. Forster (1994b); Webster (1994b).

Alchornea - A genus of about 50-70 species, pantropic; three species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1976, 1980b); Webster (1994b).

Aleurites - A genus of two species in Asia, Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands; two species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980b); Forster (1996); Stuppy et al (1999).

Baloghia - A genus of about 15 species in New Guinea, Australia, Norfolk Island, Lord Howe Island and New Caledonia; three species occur naturally in Australia. Green (1986); Webster (1994b); White (1942).

Bertya - A genus of about 28 species endemic to Australia. Halford & Henderson (2002); Guymer (1988); Webster (1994b).

Claoxylon - A genus of about 113 species in Madagascar, Asia, Malesia, Australia and the western Pacific islands; four species occur naturally in Australia, three are endemic. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Forster (2007); Webster (1994b).

Cleidion - A genus of 20-25 species, pantropic; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b).

Codiaeum - A genus of about 15 species in Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands; two species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Webster (1994b).

Croton - A large and diverse genus of about 750-800 or more species, pantropic; about 20 species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Forster (1991); Webster (1994b); Forster (2003).

Dimorphocalyx - A genus of 12-15 species in Asia, Malesia and Australia; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1969, 1974); Webster (1994b).

Endospermum - A genus of 12-14 species in Asia, Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Guerrero & Welzen (2011); Schaeffer (1971); Smith (1947).

Euphorbia - A vast genus of about 1000-2000 species, cosmopolitan; about 35 species occur naturally in Australia and about 19 species have become naturalised. Forster (1994c); Hassall (1977); Webster (1994b); White (1942).

Excoecaria - A small tropical genus with most species in Asia but with a few species extending to Africa, Madagascar, Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands; four species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a); Cooper & Cooper 2004; Harden et al. (2014); Webster (1994b); Webser (2014).

Fontainea - A genus of about ten species in New Guinea, Australia and New Caledonia; six species occur naturally in Australia. Jessup & Guymer (1985).

Homalanthus - A genus of about 20-30 species in Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands as far as Tahiti; three species occur naturally in Australia. Esser (1997); Forster (1994d); Webster (1994b).

Hylandia - A monotypic genus endemic to Australia. Airy Shaw (1974).

Macaranga - A genus of about 250-300 species in Africa, Asia, Malesia, Australia and the Pacific islands; seven species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Webster (1994b).

Mallotus - A genus of about 140-150 species in Africa, Madagascar, Asia, Malesia, Australia, New Caledonia, Fiji and other Pacific islands; about 12 species occur naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a, 1980b); Forster (1999b); Harden et al. (2014); Webster (1994b).

Manihot - A genus of about 98 species from tropical and subtropical America; three species are occasionally naturalised in Australia. Forster (1997c).

Microstachys - A genus of about 14 species mainly neotropical but with a few species in temperate North America, Asia and Australia; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Webster (1994b); Esser (1999).

Omphalea - A genus of about 17 species, pantropic; three species occur naturally in Australia. Forster (1995b); Webster (2014).

Pimelodendron - A genus of five species in Malesia, Australia and the Solomon Islands; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1980a); Djarwamingsih (2004).

Ricinocarpos - A genus of about 15 species endemic to Australia. Webster (1994b).

Ricinus - A monotypic genus, originally native in Africa, but early dispersed by man to India; now widely cultivated and naturalised.  In Australia found in all mainland states and declared  a noxious weed in some jurisdictions. Green (1994); Harden et al. (2014); Webster (2014).

Rockinghamia - A genus of two species endemic to Australia. Airy Shaw (1966, 1976); Webster (1994b).

Shonia - A genus of four species endemic to Australia.

Suregada - A genus of about 40 species in Africa, Madagascar, Asia, Malesia and Australia; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Airy Shaw (1976).

Tragia - A genus of about 125 species mainly in tropical Africa and the Americas; three species occur naturally in Australia. Forster (1994e, 1997d); Harden et al. (2014).

Trigonostemon - A genus of about  100 spp., distributed from India and China south and east to the Philippines, northern Australia (Queensland), New Guinea, and Fiji. One species is endemic to Australia. Airy Shaw (1976); Airy Shaw (1980a); Cooper & Cooper (2004); Webster (2014).

Wetria - A genus of two species in Asia, Malesia and Australia; one species occurs naturally in Australia. Forster (1994a); Welzen (1998).

References

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1966). Notes on Malaysian and other Asiatic Euphorbiaceae LXI. A new genus from Queensland. Kew Bulletin 20:29-31.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1969). Notes on Malesian and other Asiatic Euphorbiaceae. CXVL. Notes on Tritaxis Baill. and Dimorphocalyx Thw. Kew Bulletin 23:123-126.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1974). Notes on Malesian and other Asiatic Euphorbiaceae CLXXXVI. A new ostodoid genus from Queensland. Kew Bulletin 29:329-331.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1976). New or noteworthy Australian Euphorbiaceae. Kew Bulletin 31:341-398.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1980a). A partial synopsis of the Euphorbiaceae - Platylobeae of Australia (excluding Phyllanthus, Euphorbia and Calycocephalus). Kew Bulletin 35:577-700.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1980b). New or noteworthy Australian Euphorbiaceae, II. Muelleria 4:207-241.

Airy Shaw, H.K. (1983). Euphorbiaceae. In Morley, B.D. & Toelken, H.R. (Eds) 'Flowering Plants in Australia.' (Rigby Publishers: Adelaide.), pp. 129-135.

Backer, C.A. & Bakhuizen van den Brink, R.C. (1963). Euphorbiaceae. In 'Flora of Java.' Vol. 1, (N.V.P. Noordhoff: Groningen.), pp. 441-505.

Cooper, W & Cooper, W.T. (2004), Fruits of the Australian tropical rainforest, Nokomis Publications, Clifton Hill, Vic.

Djarwaningsih, T. (2004). Revision of Pimeleodendron (Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia. Blumea 49: 407-423.

Esser, H.-J. (1997). A revision of Omalanthus (Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia. Blumea 42:421-466.

Esser, H.-J. (1999). A partial revision of Hippomaneae (Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia. Blumea 44:149-215.

Fell, David G. (2007). The distribution, habitat and conservation status of Suregada glomerulata (Blume) Baill. (Euphorbiaceae) from north-eastern Cape York Peninsula, Queensland. Austrobaileya 7(3): 573-575.

Forster, P.I. (1991). Variation in Croton capitis-york (Euphorbiaceae). Kew Bulletin 46:569-572.

Forster, P.I. (1994a). Wetria australiensis sp. nov. (Euphorbiaceae) a new genus record for Australia. Austrobaileya 4:139-143.

Forster, P.I. (1994b). A taxonomic revision of Acalypha L. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 4:209-226.

Forster, P.I. (1994c). Revision of Euphorbia plumerioides Teijsm. ex Hassk. (Euphorbiaceae) and allies. Austrobaileya 4:245-264.

Forster, P.I. (1994d). Omalanthus nutans (Euphorbiaceae), the correct name for the 'Native Bleeding Heart' or 'Native Poplar' of Australia. Telopea 6:169-171.

Forster, P.I. (1994e). A taxonomic revision of Tragia (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Australian Systematic Botany 7:377-383.

Forster, P.I. (1995b). Omphalea celata, a new species of Euphorbiaceae from central Queensland. Austrobaileya 4:381-385.

Forster, P.I. (1996). A taxonomic revision of Aleurites J.R. Forst. & G. Forst. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia and New Guinea. Muelleria 9:5-13.

Forster, P.I. (1997a). A taxonomic revision of Drypetes Vahl. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 4:477-494.

Forster, P.I. (1997b). A taxonomic revision of Austrobuxus Miq. (Euphorbiaceae: Dissiliariinae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 4:619-626.

Forster, P.I. (1997c) Notes on the naturalised Flora of Queensland, 3. Austrobaileya 5(1)

Forster, P.I. (1997d). Tragia finalis (Euphorbiaceae), a new species from northern Queensland. Australian Systematic Botany 10:863-866.

Forster, P.I. (1999b). A taxonomic revision of Mallotus Lour. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 5:457-497.

Forster, P.I. & Welzen, P.C. von (1999). The Malesian species of Choriceras, Fontainea & Petalostigma (Euphorbiaceae). Blumea 44: 99-107.

Forster, P.I. (2003). A taxonomic revision of Croton L. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 6: 349-436.

Forster, P.I. (2005). A taxonomic revision of Actephila L. (Euphorbiaceae) in Australia. Austrobaileya 7(1): 57-98.

Green, P.S. (1986). New combinations in Baloghia and Codiaeum. Kew Bulletin 41:1026.

Green, P.S. in Wilson, A.J.G. (ed.) (1994), Norfolk Island & Lord Howe Island. Flora of Australia 49: 232.

Guerrero, S.A. & Welzen, P.C. Van. (2011) Revision of Malesian Endospermum (Euphorbiaceae) with notes on phylogeny and historical biogeography. Edinburgh Journal of Botany 68(3): 443-482.

Guymer, G.P. (1988). Notes on Bertya Planchon (Euphorbiaceae). Austrobaileya 2:427-431.

Halford, D.A. & Henderson, R.J.F. (2002). Studies in Euphorbiaceae A.L.Juss. sens. lat. 3. A revision of Bertya Planch. (Ricinocarpeae Mull.Arg., Bertyinae Mull.Arg.) Austrobaileya 6:187-245.

Harden, G.J., Nicholson, H.R.W., McDonald, W.J.F., Nicholson, N.J., Tame, T. & Williams, J. (2014). Rainforest Plants of Australia. Rockhampton to Victoria. Gwen Harden Publishing.

Hassall, D.C. (1977). The genus Euphorbia in Australia. Australian Journal of Botany 25:429-453.

James, T.A & Harden, G.J. (1990). Flora of New South Wales 1: 394.

Jessup. L.W. & Guymer, G.P. (1985). A revision of Fontainea Heckel (Euphorbiaceae - Cluytiae). Austrobaileya 2:112-125.

Kulju, K.K.M. & Welzen, P.C.van. (2005). Revision of the genus Cleidion (Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia. Blumea 50(1): 197-219.

McPherson, G. (1991). Breynia. In 'Flore de la Nouvelle-Caledonie et Dependances.' Vol. 17, (Museum National D'Histoire Naturelle: Paris.), pp. 14-18.

Schaeffer, J. (1971). Revision of the genus Endospermum Bth. (Euphorbiaceae). Blumea 19:171-192.

Sierra, S.E.C., Welzen, P.C. van & Silk, J.W.F. (2005) A taxonomic revision of Mallotus section Philippinenses (former section Rottlera - Euphorbiaceae) in Malesia and Thailand. Blumea 50(2): 230-234.

Smith, L.S. (1947). The ligneous genus Endospermum Benth. (Euphorbiaceae) in New Guinea. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Queensland 58:51-60.

Stuppy, W., Welzen, P.C. van, Klinratana, P. & Posa, M.C.T. (1999). Revision of the genera Aleurites, Reutealis and Vernicia (Euphorbiaceae). Blumea 44:71-98.

Webb, L.J. (1948). Guide to the medicinal and poisonous plants of Queensland. CSIR Bulletin No. 232. : 58.

Webster, G.L. (1994a). Classification of the Euphorbiaceae. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Gardens 81:2-32.

Webster, G.L. (1994b). Synopsis of the genera and subgeneric taxa of Euphorbiaceae. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Gardens 81:33-144.

Webster, G.L. (2014). Euphorbiaceae. In Kubitzki, K.(ed), The Families and Genera of Vascular Plants. (Springer-Verlag: Berlin). Vol. 11:159.

Welzen, .C. van (1998). Wetria. In Welzen, P.C. van, et al. Revision and phylogenies of Malesian Euphorbiaceae. Blumea 43:155-160.

White, C.T. (1942). Contributions to the Queensland Flora, No. 7. Proceedings of the Royal Society of Queensland 53:201-228.