Black-eyed Susan vine Thunbergia alata, photographed by Forest & Kim Starr.

Belongs within: Lamiales.
Contains: Justicia, Petalidium, Strobilanthes, Barleria.

The Acanthaceae is a group of mostly tropical herbs, shrubs and vines with fruit that are explosively dehiscing capsules.

Characters (from Black & Robertson 1965): Herbs or shrubs with opposite simple exstipulate leaves; flowers usually with two bracteoles at base of calyx. Flowers irregular, bisexual; calyx of 4 or 5 sepals; corolla 5-lobed, often 2-lipped; stamens 2, or 4 in pairs, anthers 2-celled, or 1-celled by abortion; ovary superior, 2-celled, with 2 or more ovules in each cell on septal placentas; style simple, filiform; stigma usually entire; fruit a capsule opening loculicidally in two valves, which bear the dissepiment along their centre; seeds compressed, without albumen, subtended by hooked processes of the funicle (jaculators or retinacula) which serve to scatter the seeds; embryo curved.

    |--Elytraria crenata OP01
    `--+--Thunbergia OP01 [Thunbergioideae T00]
       |    |--T. alata OP01
       |    |--T. fragrans P88
       |    |--T. grandiflora P88
       |    |--T. lutea D07
       |    `--T. usumbarica OP01
       `--Barleria OP01

Acanthaceae incertae sedis:
  Justicia BR65
  Nelsonia C55 [Nelsonioideae T00]
    `--N. canescens C55
  Mendoncioideae T00
    |--Gilletiella T00
    `--Mendoncia T00
  Acanthus BR65 [Acanthoideae T00]
    |--A. ilicifolius BR65
    |--A. mollis C55
    `--A. spinosus Linnaeus 1753 PL04
  Ruellia CV06 [Ruellioideae T00]
    |--R. aspera CV06
    |--R. brandbergensis CV06
    |--R. hirta VD03a
    `--R. tuberosa PP07
  Graptophyllum pictum P88
  Asystasia P88
    |--A. gangetica [incl. A. coromandeliana] P88
    `--A. intrusa P88
  Hygrophila CV06
    |--H. gracillima CV06
    `--H. schulli VB02
  Petalidium CV06
  Blepharis CV06
    |--B. ferox CV06
    |--B. fleckii CV06
    |--B. gigantea CV06
    |--B. linariaefolia PP07
    |--B. maderaspatensis HK98
    |--B. meyeri CV06
    |--B. pruinosa CV06
    `--B. spinifex CV06
  Monechma CV06
    |--M. calcaratum CV06
    |--M. callothamnum CV06
    |--M. crassiusculum CV06
    |--M. desertorum CV06
    |--M. grandiflorum CV06
    |--M. leucoderme CV06
    |--M. serotinum CV06
    `--M. tonsum CV06
  Peristrophe CV06
    |--P. grandibracteata CV06
    |--P. hereroensis CV06
    |--P. namibiensis CV06
    |    |--P. n. ssp. namibiensis CV06
    |    `--P. n. ssp. brandbergensis CV06
    `--P. paniculata PP07
  Rhinacanthus kaokoensis CV06
  Megaskepasma MM96
  Strobilanthes MGF04
  Dipteracanthus patulus PP07
    |--D. p. var. patulus PP07
    `--D. p. var. alba PP07
  Lepidagathis PP07
    |--L. bandraensis PP07
    |--L. fasciculata VD03a
    |--L. scariosa SR07
    `--L. trinervis PP07
  Phlogacanthus BB07
    |--P. thyrsiflorus BB07
    `--P. tubiflorus BB07
  Andrographis SR07
    |--A. elongata SR07
    `--A. paniculata C55
  Dicliptera SR07
    |--D. ciliaris C55
    `--D. foetida SR07
  Adhatoda SDK05
    |--A. hyssopifolia C55
    `--A. vasica SDK05
  Sericocalyx crispus (Linnaeus) Bremekamp 1944 [=Ruellia crispa Linnaeus 1753] VD03a
  Hemigraphis VD03a
    |--H. dura VD03a
    |--H. hirta VD03a
    |--H. latebrosa VD03a
    `--H. venosa Clarke 1884 [=Ruellia venosa Heyne ms] VD03a
  Cardanthera triflora VD03a
  Carvia callosa VD03b
  Cardenthera difformis P03
  Eranthemum purpurascens P03
  Stenosiphonium VA06
    |--S. confertum VA06
    |--S. cordifolium [incl. S. cordifolium var. subsericeum, S. russellianum var. subsericeum] VA06
    |--s. parviflorum VA06
    |--S. russellianum VA06
    |--S. setosum VA06
    `--S. wightii Bremekamp 1944 VA06

*Type species of generic name indicated


[BB07] Baishya, A. K. & P. J. Bora. 2007. Cross community ethno-medico botany of Dibru-Saikhowa Biosphere Reserve, Assam. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 49 (1-4): 121-154.

[BR65] Black, J. M., & E. L. Robertson. 1965. Flora of South Australia. Part IV. Oleaceae-Compositae. W. L. Hawes, Government Printer: Adelaide.

[C55] Candolle, A. de. 1855. Géographie Botanique Raisonée: Ou exposition des faits principaux et des lois concernant la distribution géographique des plantes de l’époque actuelle vol. 2. Librairie de Victor Masson: Paris.

[CV06] Craven, P., & P. Vorster. 2006. Patterns of plant diversity and endemism in Namibia. Bothalia 36 (2): 175-189.

[D07] Dash, S. S. 2007. Useful plants of Kabi Sacred Grove, Sikkim. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 49 (1-4): 79-88.

[HK98] Hahn, A., & H. Kusserow. 1998. Spatial and temporal distribution of algae in soil crusts in the Sahel of W Africa: Preliminary results. Willdenowia 28: 227-238.

[MGF04] Manning, J. C., P. Goldblatt & M. F. Fay. 2004. A revised generic synopsis of Hyacinthaceae in sub-Saharan Africa, based on molecular evidence, including new combinations and the new tribe Pseudoprospereae. Edinburgh Journal of Botany 60 (3): 533-568.

[MM96] Mound, L. A., & R. Marullo. 1996. The thrips of Central and South America: an introduction (Insecta: Thysanoptera). Memoirs on Entomology, International 6: 1-487.

[OP01] Olmstead, R. G., C. W. dePamphilis, A. D. Wolfe, N. D. Young, W. J. Elisons & P. A. Reeves. 2001. Disintegration of the Scrophulariaceae. American Journal of Botany 88 (2): 348-361.

[PP07] Pandey, R. P. & P. M. Padhye. 2007. Studies on phytodiversity of Arid Machia Safari Park-Kailana in Jodhpur (Rajasthan). Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 49 (1-4): 15-78.

[P03] Paul, T. K. 2003. Botanical observations on the Purulia pumped storage hydropower project area, Bagmundi Hills, Purulia district, West Bengal. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 45 (1-4): 121-142.

[PL04] Pohl, G., & I. Lenski. 2004. Zur Verbreitung und Vergesellschaftung von Pennisetum orientale Rich. in Nordeuböa (Griechenland) (Poaceae, Paniceae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 83 (2): 209-223.

[P88] Polunin, I. 1988. Plants and Flowers of Malaysia. Times Editions: Singapore.

[SR07] Sankar, R. V., K. Ravikumar, N. M. Ganesh Babu & D. K. Ved. 2007. Botany of Anapady MPCA, Palghat district, Kerala with special emphasis on species of conservation concern. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 49 (1-4): 165-172.

[SDK05] Sharma, L. K., N. K. Dadhich & A. Kumar. 2005. Plant based veterinary medicine from traditional knowledge of India. Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 47 (1-4): 43-52.

[T00] Thorne, R. F. 2000. The classification and geography of the flowering plants: Dicotyledons of the class Angiospermae (subclasses Magnoliidae, Ranunculidae, Caryophyllidae, Dilleniidae, Rosidae, Asteridae, and Lamiidae). The Botanical Review 66: 441-647.

[VA06] Venu, P. & W. D. Albertson. 2006. The identity of Stenosiphonium wrightii Bremek. (Acanthaceae). Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 48 (1-4): 211-216.

[VD03a] Venu, P. & P. Daniel. 2003a. Is Hemigraphis venosa C.B. Clarke (Acanthaceae) extinct? Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 45 (1-4): 91-96.

[VD03b] Venu, P. & P. Daniel. 2003b. What is Kanjarum palghatense Ramam. (Acanthaceae)? Bulletin of the Botanical Survey of India 45 (1-4): 97-104.

[VB02] Vijay, S. K., & T. N. Bhardwaja. 2002. Vegetation and phenodynamics of wetlands of central Rajasthan. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 99 (3): 573-581.

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