Scrophulariaceae

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Chapter: Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry : Study of Different Families

Leaves are simple, alternate, opposite or whorled, exstipulate, and sometimes exhibit heterophylly.


SCROPHULARIACEAE

 

Habit: These are mostly herbs and under-shrubs.

 

Leaves: These are simple, alternate, opposite or whorled, exstipulate, and sometimes exhibit heterophylly.

 

Inflorescence: This is usually racemose (raceme or spike), and sometimes cymose (dichasium). It can be axillary or terminal. The flowers are solitary in some species.

 

Flowers: These are zygomorphic, two-lipped and some-times personate. They often have a great diversity of form. They are bisexual and hypogynous. Bracts and bracteoles are generally present.

 

Calyx: The sepals are (5), gamosepalous, five-lobed and often imbricate.

 

Corolla: The petals are (5), gamopetalous, often two-lipped and sometimes spurred or saccate. They are medianly zygomorphic, very rarely regular (as in Sco-paria), and imbricate.

 

Androecium: The stamens are four, didynamous, some-times two, arching over in pairs. The posterior stamen is absent or a staminode. The anthers are divaricate.

 

Gynoecium: The carpels are (2) and syncarpous. The ovary is superior, bilocular and antero-posterior (and not oblique as in solanaceae). The placentation is axile. The stigma is simple or bilobed. There are usually many ovules, though sometimes only a few. The disc is ring-like around the base of the ovary, sometimes unilateral.

 

Fruit: This is mostly a capsule and sometimes a berry.

 

Seeds: These are usually numerous, minute and endospermic.



 


                              Floral diagram of scrophulariaceae


Examples : Digitalis purpurea, brahmi (Baccopa monnieria), etc. 

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