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a family of dicotyledonous plants. They are shrubs, subshrubs, and herbs. The plants are often distinctively pubescent. The leaves are simple, generally opposite, and entire. The flowers are solitary or in racemes, usually bisexual, and regular. There are five sepals and five petals (less frequently, three of each); as a rule, there are many stamens. The gynoecia consist of five or three carpels (less frequently, there are up to ten). The ovary is superior. The fruit is a capsule. There are between six and eight genera, comprising approximately 180 species, distributed primarily in temperate regions of the northern hemisphere, especially in the Mediterranean region. In the USSR there are three genera (more than 20 species), found predominantly in dry, sunny places in the Caucasus. The most important genera of Cistaceae are Cistus and Helianthemum. Many species of Cistaceae are ornamentals.