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[[{{{domain}}}]] > [[{{{superregnum}}}]] > Plantae > [[{{{subregnum}}}]] > [[{{{superdivisio}}}]] > [[{{{superphylum}}}]] > [[]] > [[{{{phylum}}}]] > [[{{{subdivisio}}}]] > [[{{{subphylum}}}]] > [[{{{infraphylum}}}]] > [[{{{microphylum}}}]] > [[{{{nanophylum}}}]] > [[{{{superclassis}}}]] > [[]] > [[{{{subclassis}}}]] > [[{{{infraclassis}}}]] > [[{{{superordo}}}]] > [[]] > [[{{{subordo}}}]] > [[{{{infraordo}}}]] > [[{{{superfamilia}}}]] > Commelinaceae > [[{{{subfamilia}}}]] > [[{{{supertribus}}}]] > [[{{{tribus}}}]] > [[{{{subtribus}}}]] > [[{{{genus}}}]] {{{subgenus}}} {{{sectio}}} {{{series}}} {{{species}}} {{{subspecies}}} var. {{{cultivar}}}

Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture

Commelinaceae (from the genus Commelina dedicated to J. and G. Commelin, Dutch botanists of the early 18th century). Spiderwort Family. Fig. 10. Herbs with knotty stems, and somewhat sheathing, alternate, flat or channeled, cauline leaves: flowers usually bisexual, almost or quite regular, hypogynous; perianth of 6 parts, in 2 series, differentiated into a green calyx and colored corolla; the petals separate or united into a tube, mostly quickly disappearing, and dissolving into a viscid liquid; stamens 6, or reduced to 3, with or without staminodia; some anthers often sterile and altered; the filaments usually provided with characteristic long hairs; ovary superior, 2-3-celled, few-seeded; style 1; stigma usually captitate: fruit a capsule.

Twenty-five genera and about 300 species occur, widely distributed in the tropics and subtropics. Eleven species reach the northeastern United States. The largest genus is Commelina, with 88 species. The family is not closely related to any other. The general habit, the complete differentiation of the perianth into calyx and corolla, the slight irregularity of the flower, the peculiar stamen-hairs, and the transformed anthers, are together distinctive. The peculiar deliquescent character of the petals in many genera is of interest.

The rhizomes of several species of Commelina contain starch, besides the mucilage, and are eaten. The rhizome of C. Rumphii is an emmenagogue. The tubers of Aneilema medicum are used in China for coughs and lung diseases. A decoction of Cyanotis axillaris is used by the Indians for dropsy. The family is most important from the point of view of ornamental use.

Several genera are grown in America, all for ornament. Among these are: Aneilema; Cochliostema; Commelina (Day Flower); Dichorisandra; Tradescantia (Spider-wort, Wandering Jew); Zebrina (Wandering Jew).CH

The above text is from the Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture. It may be out of date, but still contains valuable and interesting information which can be incorporated into the remainder of the article. Click on "Collapse" in the header to hide this text.



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