Flora of the Marquesas
   Apocynaceae -- The Dogbane, Milkweed Family
General Information
DistributionMascarene Islands to Malesia, the Bonin Islands, and Australia, and eastward in the Pacific to the Society and Marquesas Islands and Hawaii.
Trees or shrubs, sap milky.
Leaves usually verticillate, sometimes opposite, the blades chartaceous to subcoriaceous, the secondary veins straight, nearly horizontal; petioles relatively short.
Inflorescences axillary, cymose, dichotomously or trichotomously branched, with small bracts; calyx lobes broadly ovate, obtuse, without glands; corolla hypocrateriform, the tube cylindric, slightly broadened below the constricted throat, this without scales, the lobes dextrorsely contorted in bud; stamens with short filaments and oblong, acute anthers; disk lacking; ovary bicarpellate, glabrous, the carpels not immersed in tissue but glandular at base, with 2-6, 2-seriate ovules, long-attenuate into style, this progressively attenuate distally, the style head short-cylindric, with a basal row of conglutinate hairs, 2-apiculate at apex.
Fruit usually apocarpous, sometimes more or less syncarpous toward base, the mericarps drupaceous, somewhat dorsiventrally compressed, with or without a wing; exocarp and mesocarp more or less fleshy, often ripening orange, purple, or red, the mesocarp without fibers; endocarp hard-fibrous but smooth-surfaced, with 2 somewhat extended cavities distinct from the laterally compressed seminiferous cavity and at first filled with milky parenchyma (usually empty at maturity), not muricate on surface nor with fibrous extensions.
The seeds 2-6, compressed, narrowly winged, the hilum linear.
David Lorence