Common name. Mistletoes. Family Loranthaceae.
Habit and leaf form. Shrubs; evergreen. Plants rootless (in the normal sense); partially parasitic. On aerial parts of the host. Leaves cauline (ass.). Stem internodes solid (ass.). Stem growth conspicuously sympodial. Mesophytic, or xerophytic. Leaves fasciculate (verticillate, rarely); alternate to opposite (displaced opposite, usually), or whorled (rarely); leathery, or membranous; edgewise to the stem, or with ‘normal’ orientation; simple. Leaf blades entire; flat, or solid; terete; usually curvinerved in Australian species. Leaves without stipules. Leaf blade margins entire. Leaves without a persistent basal meristem. Leaf anatomy. Extra-floral nectaries absent (ass.). Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring.
Reproductive type, pollination. Fertile flowers hermaphrodite. Unisexual flowers absent. Plants hermaphrodite. Entomophilous, or ornithophilous.
Inflorescence and flower features. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; in heads, or in umbels. The terminal inflorescence unit cymose. Inflorescences axillary (mostly); inflorescence a pedunculate umbel made up of diads, triads or tetrads called rays, usually reduced to a single triad with the central flower sessile and the lateral flowers pedicellate; rays of umbel 2 to several, usually strongly divergent. Flowers pedicellate, or sessile; bracteate (free, usually 1 under each flower, much shorter than the flowers, concave); ebracteolate (ass.); regular; cyclic; tetracyclic. Floral receptacle markedly hollowed. Free hypanthium present; adnate to the ovary. Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla, or petaline, or absent; 3–9; 2 -whorled, or 1 -whorled. Calyx present (KPCB), or vestigial (A), or absent (apparently); 1 -whorled; gamosepalous (reduced to a lobed or toothed cup or rim); entire, or lobed; when not entire, lobulate, or blunt-lobed, or toothed; open in bud; regular; persistent. Corolla present, or absent (apparently); 4–7; 1 -whorled; polypetalous, or gamopetalous; valvate; tubular, or urceolate (elongated); unequal but not bilabiate, or bilabiate, or regular; yellow, or red. Androecial members definite in number. Androecium 4–7. Androecial members adnate (to the corolla); all equal (ass.); free of one another; 1 -whorled. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 4–7; all more or less similar in shape (ass.); isomerous with the perianth; alternisepalous (epipetalous). Anthers basifixed; non-versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; introrse; unilocular (KP), or bilocular (AKP), or many locular (A); bisporangiate, or tetrasporangiate. Gynoecium 3 carpelled, or 4 carpelled. The pistil 1 celled. Gynoecium syncarpous; synstylovarious, or eu-syncarpous; inferior. Ovary unilocular; 1 locular. Gynoecium stylate. Styles 1; apical. Stigmas 1. Ovules not differentiated; in the single cavity 4–12; several; sessile; ascending; non-arillate; not clearly differentiated from the placenta.
Fruit and seed features. Fruit fleshy; indehiscent; a berry, or a drupe; 1 celled (ass.); 1 seeded. Seeds copiously endospermic. Endosperm oily. Seeds covered with viscous material; without a testa. Embryo well differentiated. Cotyledons 2, or 1.
Etymology. From the Greek for "without" and "to instruct"; because the full description of the genus had not been published when the name was first used.
Wheeler, Judy; Marchant, Neville; Lewington, Margaret; Graham, Lorraine (2002). Flora of the south west, Bunbury, Augusta, Denmark. Volume 2, dicotyledons. Australian Biological Resources Study. Canberra.
Barlow, B. A. (1992). Conspectus of the genus Amyema Tieghem (Loranthaceae).
Blackall, William E.; Grieve, Brian J. (1988). How to know Western Australian wildflowers : a key to the flora of the extratropical regions of Western Australia. Part I : Dicotyledons (Casuarinaceae to Chenopodiaceae). University of W.A. Press. Perth.
Marchant, N. G.; Wheeler, J. R.; Rye, B. L.; Bennett, E. M.; Lander, N. S.; Macfarlane, T. D.; Western Australian Herbarium (1987). Flora of the Perth region. Part one. Western Australian Herbarium. Perth.
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