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Fabaceae . “The Legume Family”. A little background information . Fabaceae forms the third largest family of flowering plants with 690-800 genera and 14,000-20,000 species. Fabaceae is comprised of three different subfamilies.

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fabaceae

Fabaceae

“The Legume Family”

a little background information
A little background information
  • Fabaceae forms the third largest family of flowering plants with 690-800 genera and 14,000-20,000 species.
  • Fabaceae is comprised of three different subfamilies.
  • Most occur in subtropical to tropical climates but is common throughout many different climate areas.
  • Leaves are pinnate, bipinnate, simple and in the subfamily papilionoideae they are palmate, simple, never bipinnate.
  • Is an ancient family that has a fossil record that extends into the cretaceous period.
slide3
The legume family (Fabaceae) is the third largest family of flowering plants with more than 18,000 described species. It is surpassed in size only by the orchid family (Orchidaceae) with about 20,000 species and the sunflower family (Asteraceae) with about 24,000 species. The family includes herbs, shrubs, trees and vines distributed throughout the world, especially the tropical rain forest. The fruit is technically called a legume or pod. It is composed of a single seed-bearing carpel that splits open along two seams. Legume fruits come in an enormous variety of shapes and sizes, including indehiscent pods that do not split open. Of all the legumes, the peanut is especially fascinating because it develops below the ground.

Plants found on rare or endangered MN list

  • Desmanthus illinoensis (Michx.) MacM, Fabaceae -- prairie mimosa
  • Desmodium cuspidatum (Muhl. ex Willd.) DC. ex Loud. var. longifolium (Torr. & Gray) Schub., Fabaceae -- big tick-trefoil
  • Desmodium nudiflorum (L.) DC., Fabaceae -- stemless tick-trefoil
  • Astragalus flexuosus (Hook.) Dougl., Fabaceae -- slender milk-vetch
  • Astragalus missouriensis Nutt., Fabaceae -- Missouri milk-vetch
  • Baptisia alba (L.) Bent., Fabaceae -- white wild indigo
extra info
Extra Info
  • They all have podded fruit, and have nitrogen-fixing nodules at their roots, through a symbiotic relationship with soil micro-organisms.
  • http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/eco/plant_list9-25-02.pdf pp. 8,9,21
references
References
  • http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/199651/Fabaceae
  • http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/rsg/profile.html?action=elementDetail&selectedElement=PDFAB27090
  • www.waynesword.palomar.edu/legume1.htm
  • http://files.dnr.state.mn.us/eco/plant_list9-25-02.pdf