Kalanchoe Adans.

Fam.Pl. p248 (1763)
Name Status

Scientific Description

Family Crassulaceae.

Habit and leaf form. Herbs, or shrubs; evergreen. Plants succulent. Herbs annual to perennial; plants with a basal concentration of leaves, or with neither basal nor terminal concentrations of leaves. Xerophytic, or mesophytic, or hydrophytic. Leaves opposite; fleshy; petiolate to sessile; simple, or compound; peltate, or not peltate; when compound, ternate, or pinnate. Leaflets 3, or 5. Leaf blades when simple, entire, or dissected; flat (more or less); when dissected, deeply lobed; one-veined, or pinnately veined; cross-venulate, or without cross-venules. Leaves without stipules. Leaf blade margins entire, or crenate, or serrate. Leaves without a persistent basal meristem. Leaf anatomy. Hydathodes present. Stem anatomy. Nodes unilacunar, or tri-lacunar. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring.

Reproductive type, pollination. Fertile flowers hermaphrodite. Unisexual flowers absent. Plants hermaphrodite. Floral nectaries present. Nectar secretion seemingly from the gynoecium (each carpel with a nectariferous scale-like appendage abaxially near the base). Entomophilous.

Inflorescence and flower features. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; in cymes. Inflorescences simple, or compound (often arranged in panicles or corymbs). The terminal inflorescence unit cymose. Inflorescences terminal. Flowers small to medium-sized; regular; 4 merous; cyclic; pentacyclic. Floral receptacle not markedly hollowed. Free hypanthium present, or absent. Hypogynous disk seemingly absent (i.e. the nectariferous appendages being interpreted as gynoecial). Perianth with distinct calyx and corolla; 8; 2 -whorled; isomerous. Calyx 4; 1 -whorled; gamosepalous (basally); imbricate; regular; persistent. Corolla 4; 1 -whorled; gamopetalous (petals connate in a tube for more than half their length); imbricate; regular; yellow to orange; persistent (and becoming twisted after anthesis). Androecium 8. Androecial members adnate (to the corolla); free of one another; 2 -whorled. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 8; inserted at markedly different levels; diplostemonous; alternisepalous. Anthers more or less basifixed; non-versatile; dehiscing via longitudinal slits; latrorse, or introrse; bilocular; tetrasporangiate. Gynoecium 4 carpelled. Carpels isomerous with the perianth. Gynoecium apocarpous, or syncarpous; eu-apocarpous, or semicarpous (when the carpels slightly united at the base); superior. Carpel apically stigmatic; 20–50 ovuled (i.e. ‘numerous’). Placentation (sub) marginal. Stigmas wet type; papillate; Group III type. Ovules pendulous to horizontal; biseriate; non-arillate; anatropous.

Fruit and seed features. Fruit non-fleshy; an aggregate. The fruiting carpels not coalescing. The fruiting carpel dehiscent; a follicle (enclosed in withered calyx and corolla). Fruit numerous-seeded. Seeds endospermic. Endosperm oily. Cotyledons 2. Embryo straight. Seedling. Germination phanerocotylar.

Physiology, biochemistry. Aluminium accumulation not found. Photosynthetic pathway: CAM.

Geography, cytology, number of species. Native of Australia. Not endemic to Australia. Australian states and territories: Western Australia. Northern Botanical Province.

Additional characters Corolla lobes spreading (or recurved).

H.R. Coleman, 8 September 2016

Taxonomic Literature

  • Wheeler, J. R.; Rye, B. L.; Koch, B. L.; Wilson, A. J. G.; Western Australian Herbarium (1992). Flora of the Kimberley region. Western Australian Herbarium. Como, W.A.