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Verbenaceae J. St.-Hil., nom. cons.
the lantana or vervain family
Verbena (more often used in the plural, verbenæ) was the Latin name for a branch of, especially, olive, laurel or myrtle used ceremonially. Linnaeus gave the name to the Vervain genus, which was thought to have magical powers, especially to avert the power of witches. The classification of Verbenaceae is in a state of flux, especially regarding its relationship to Lamiaceae. Clerodendrum and Vitex, in particular, are still often placed in Verbenaceae rather than Lamiaceae. Members of Verbenaceae have opposite or whorled leaves that are usually undivided. The flowers are in spikes, clusters or racemes, and usually have a tube flaring into 4 or 5 almost equally cut lobes. Frequently they have quadrangular twigs and aromatic leaves.
Citharexylum spinosum - Jamaican Fiddlewood
Duranta erecta - Geisha Girl
Duranta repens (syn.) - Geisha Girl
Lantana camara - Lantana
Petrea arborea (syn.) - Queen's Wreath
Petrea aspera (syn.) - Queen's Wreath
Petrea volubilis - Queen's Wreath
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis - Snakeweed
Stachytarpheta mutabilis - Pink Porterweed
Photograph © Donald Simpson 2014
Page last updated 31st March 2018