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Chapter: Pharmacognosy and Phytochemistry : Study of Different Families

A British systematic botanist J. Hutchinson published his work, The Families of Flowering Plants in 1926 on dicotyle-dons and in 1934 on monocotyledons. Hutchinson made it clear that the plants with sepals and petals are more primitive than the plants without petals and sepals on the assumption that free parts are more primitive than fused ones.



Habit: These are mostly twiners, often with latex and bicollateral vascular bundles or internal phloem.


Leaves: The leaves are simple, alternate and exstipu-late.


Inflorescence: The inflorescence is cymose. The flowers are regular, bisexual, hypogynous, often large and showy.


Calyx: There are five sepals, usually free. The odd one is posterior, imbricate and persistent.


Corolla: There are (5) petals, is gamopetalous, funnel shaped, twisted in bud and sometimes imbricate.


Androecium: The five stamens are epipetalous, alternat-ing with the petals.


Gynoecium: There are (2) carpels, rarely more, connate. The ovary is superior, with a disc at the base. It is two celled, with two ovules in each cell, or sometimes four-celled with one ovule in each cell. The placentation is axile.


Fruit: The fruit is a berry or a capsule.


                                                 Floral diagram of convolvulaceae 

Examples: Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas), jalap (Ipomoea purga), etc. 


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