The Family Convolvulaceae is known as the “Morning Glory” family, and contains 50-55 genera and about 1600-1700 species. Most are herbaceous climbing/trailing vines, but some are shrubs and trees.
Characteristics of Family Convolvulaceae:
- Simple, alternate leaves: leaves possess a single, undivided leaf blade at each node
- Flowers: 5-merous actinomorphic (5-point radial symmetry), often bisexual and showy
- Corolla (petals) fused into a tube
- Stamen (pollen producing organ) fused to petals
- Compound pistil composed of 2 or more fused carpals (ovule-bearing female reproductive parts, possibly modified leaves)
- Sepals: 5 unfused, overlapping sepals (leaf-like, lowermost part of flower that protect flower as a bud)
- Herbaceous parts tend to be twining (winding around something)
- Fruits: tend to be capsules (simple, dry fruits that split along pores/sutures to release seeds)
Familiar members of the Family Convolvulaceae are Morning Glory and Sweet Potatoes (Genus Ipomoea), Bindweed (Genus Convolvulus), and Dodder (Genus Cuscuta).