Make an online Consultation »  
Plants under Family: Convolvulaceae

Family: Convolvulaceae - Morning-glory family


Morning-glory family

Convolvulaceae is composed of about 50 genera and 1500 species, is distributed across the worlds tropical and subtropical regions. Only a small number of species are found in temperate areas. Most species of Convolvulaceae are herbs. 

The family consists of herbaceous or woody often climbing, juicy, usually milky and rich in juice, leaves having an alternate arrangement, simple leaves with stipules being absent. The stems of these herbs are twining or prostrate. Shrubby species are rare and only a few become trees. 

The flowers are large and funnel-shaped, bell-shaped or crateriform. Many species each have a distinct flower color. Flowers are dioecious, bisexual, actinomorphic, bracts often forming an involuore, sepals usually free imbricate, persistent, corolla sympettallous, 5 lobes, plicate, contorted, or rarely imbricate, stamens 5 inserted to the base of corolla of tube. Bilocular anthers, solitary ovules, terminal style. The flower has one pistil composed of 2 carpels. The ovary has 2 or 4 lobules. (In section Pharbitis of genus Ipomoea, the pistil is composed of 3 carpels and 3 lobular ovaries). The flower has 5 stamens. Pollen grains are spheroidal and prolate. Pollen tubes develop from germination colpae or pores.). Most species in many genera, including Convolvulus, have 3 colpae (some species have 4 or 5 colpae-pollen). Calystegia species have ca. 30 pores, while Ipomoea species have 100-200. In the tribes Ipomoeeae and Argyreieae, many spiny protuberances are observed on the outer wall (exine) of the pollen grain. This type of pollen is called the echinate type. In other tribes, such spiny protuberances are not found, so the pollens are called the smooth-surface or psilate type. The fruits are ordinarily dehiscent capsules, while some species have baccate fruits or nut-like fruits. 

Focusing on the surface morphology of pollen grains the family Convolvulaceae is classified into two Subfamilies: a smooth-surface subfamily, or psiloconiae and a spiny-surface subfamily, or echinoconiae. The latter would derive from the former phylogenetically. Concerning the number of chromosomes, the tribe Convolvuleae, including the genera Convolvulus and Calystegia, have basic numbers x=10,11,12, while other tribes have x=14,15. Convolvulaceae has been classified according to various criteria, including the morphology of pollen and pistils, the dehiscence of capsules and the chromosome number. 

Generally Convolvulaceae have smooth surfaced or colpate type of pollen, the style will be entire,  the fruit will be capsule dehiscent and of chromosome number n=20,22,24,30,40,44,50 etc, with scanty endosperm, more or less curved, the cotyledons folded or crumbled.

Useful products from the family Convolvulaceae are:
Jalap - Exogonium purga (Mexico)
Silver Potato - Ipomea batatas (Tropics)
Scammony - Convolvulous scammonia (Asia minor)

Convolvulus turpethum
Operculina ventricosa
Convolvulus ventricosus 
Ipomoea turpethum 
Merremia turpethum

18 genera in Convolvulaceae
Scientific Name - Common Name
 Aniseia Choisy - aniseia
 Argyreia Lour. - argyreia
 Astripomoea A. Meeuse - astripomoea
 Bonamia Thouars - ladys nightcap
 Calystegia R. Br. - false bindweed
 Convolvulus L. - bindweed
 Cressa L. - alkaliweed
 Dichondra J.R. & G. Forst. - ponysfoot
 Evolvulus L. - dwarf morning-glory
 Ipomoea L. - morning-glory
 Jacquemontia Choisy - clustervine
 Merremia Dennst. ex Endl. - woodrose
 Operculina Silva Manso - lidpod
 Poranopsis Roberty - poranopsis
 Stictocardia Hallier f. - stictocardia
 Stylisma Raf. - dawnflower
 Turbina Raf. - turbina
 Xenostegia Austin & Staples - morningvine

Medicinal plants under: Convolvulaceae

Sanskrit Name Botanical Name
Merremia emarginata, Merremia gangetica
Ipomoea reniformis Chois.
Cuscuta reflexa Roxb.
Ipomoea hederaceae Jacq.
Ipomoea hederacea auct.
Ipomoea mauritiana Jacq., Ipomoea paniculata R. Br.
Ipomoea sepiaria Roxb., Ipomoea acut.non (Linn.f.) Sweet
Ipomoea batatas (Linn.) Lam.
Merremia tridentata Hallier, Ipomoea tridentata (Linn.) Roth
Cressa cretica Linn.
Evolvulus alsinoides Linn., Convolvulus pluricaulis Chois.
Ipomoea turpethum Linn., Operculina ipomoea Linn.
Ipomoea digitata Linn.
Argyreia speciosa Sweet, Argyreia nervosa Boj., Lettsomia nevosa
Ipomoea perscaprae (Linn.) R.Br., Ipomoea biloba Forssk.

Kotakkal Ayurveda - Mother land of modern ayurveda