Theaceae

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Theaceae

[thē′ās·ē‚ē]
(botany)
A family of dicotyledonous erect trees or shrubs in the order Theales characterized by alternate, exstipulate leaves, usually five petals, and mostly numerous stamens.

Theaceae

 

(Camelliaceae, Ternstroemiaceae), a family of dicotyledonous trees and shrubs. The evergreen leaves are alternate, simple, mostly leathery, and exstipulate. The regular flowers are usually bisexual, often solitary, and axillary or apical. Many species have large red, white, or, less frequently, other colored flowers. There are five or, less commonly, six or seven sepals; there are five or, rarely, four or more than five petals. There are usually numerous stamens. The gynoecium consists of three to five carpels (rarely two or ten). The ovary is usually superior. The fruits may be capsules, dry indehiscent fruits, drupes, or berries.

There are approximately 550 species, belonging to about 30 genera, distributed mainly in the tropics and subtropics of both hemispheres. The tea plant has great commercial importance, and the camellia is grown as an ornamental. Some species are grown for their wood.