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A large family of dicotyledonous plants in the order Ericales distinguished by having twice as many stamens as corolla lobes.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a family of dicotyledonous plants comprising low evergreen shrubs or (rarely) semishrubs, lianas, and trees. Leaves are usually alternate; flowers are bisexual and sometimes single, although more often formed in umbellate, racemic, or panicular inflorescences. There are four or five each of sepals and petals—rarely, the number is as high as eight each. The corolla is usually brightly colored, and the fruit is boll-like or drupelike. There are about 50 genera and 1,750 species inhabiting both hemispheres, from the arctic deserts to the tropics. In the USSR, 21 genera and over 50 species are found. There are some ornamentals (such as species of rhododendron, erica, and the strawberry tree). Among the wild Ericaceae, the most widespread are Korean rhododendron, heather, butterbur, and bearberry. Micorhiza often form on the roots of Ericaceae; for this reason the plants are able to grow on nitrogen-poor boggy or sandy soils. Sometimes the bilberry family is considered part of the Ericaceae family.


Bush, E. A., and A. N. Poiarkova. “Vereskovye.” In Flora SSSR, vol. 18. Moscow-Leningrad, 1952.
Takhtadzhian, A. L. Sistema i filogeniia tsvetkovykh rastenii. Moscow-Leningrad, 1966.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
ERICACEOUS plants must be grown in lime-free soil or the leaves will turn yellow and the plants' health will suffer.
Ericaceous plants such as heather and blueberry bushes are unable to tolerate what in soil?
The solution is to plant in the correct soil pH, but if this is not possible, add sequestered iron and feed plants with fertiliser formulated for ericaceous plants.
Watering ericaceous plants is always best with rainwater rather than tap water so check you water butt is collecting this precious commodity whenever showers fall.
It's brilliant used in the vegetable garden, but should be avoided where ericaceous plants such as rhododendrons, camellias, azaleas and heathers are being grown, as these plants need acidic growing conditions and are chalk-hating.
Ericaceous plants with yellowing leaves and stunted growth are a sign of too much lime.
Other soil improvers include spent mushroom compost, a composted straw-based waste product from commercial mushroom farming, which is highly alkaline so can be used to moderate pH but should not be used on ericaceous plants such as rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias.
Rhododendrons, azaleas and all the ericaceous plants must have an acid soil and ericaceous compost.
The solution is to plant in the correct soil pH, but if this is not possible, add sequestered iron and feed plants with fertiliser formulated for ericaceous plants. Poor flowering and lack of fruit, though, can be caused by lack of potassium and this too can be detected by looking at the foliage.
Start feeding the plant with a special feed specially formulated for ericaceous plants (such as Miracid) and top up with Sequestered iron for an immediate improvement.
Pine needles are worth gathering and placing in a separate leaf mould pile as they produce acidic leaf mould, which is ideal for mulching ericaceous plants, such as rhododendrons, azaleas, camellias, Pieris and blueberries.