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Haemodoraceae R. Br., nom. cons.
the bloodwort or kangaroo paw family
Haemodorum, the genus after which the family is named, is derived from the Greek 'αιμα (hæma), blood, and δωρον (doron), a gift, referring to the red rootstock. Haemodoraceae are herbs, perennial or rarely annual, rhizomatous, often stoloniferous, the sap of the rhizomes or stolons often red or orange. The leaves are mostly basal, distichous, iris-like, leathery, alternate, succulent and rather large, the blade linear to ensiform, parallel-veined, with entire margins, and enclosed by a sheath. The inflorescences are terminal, cymose or corymbose, many-branched, many-flowered. There are 6 tepals in two equal whorls; the ovary is 3-loculed. The fruit is a loculicidally dehiscent capsule.
Anigozanthos flavidus - Tall Kangaroo Paw
Haemodorum coccineum - Scarlet Bloodroot
Photograph by André Karwath aka Aka (Own work), via Wikimedia Commons
Page last updated 17th October 2014