Joinvilleaceae Toml. & A.C.Sm.
  • Taxon 19: 888 (1970)

This taxon is accepted by eMonocot

General Description

Perennial herbs from condensed, sympodial rhizomes; aerial shoots erect, unbranched, hollow except for the nodes, terete or rarely compressed. Leaves distichous; sheath open, more or less ligulate; blade linear-lanceolate with constricted base, pubescent, plicate, the veins anastomosing. Inflorescence terminal, many-flowered, paniculiform, bracteate. Flowers (sub-)sessile, hermaphroditic, actinomorphic, pentacyclic, trimerous. Tepals free or almost so, dry, bractlike with thickened bases, concave, persistent. Stamens free or slightly adnate to the perianth base; anthers basifixed, sagittate, dithecal, introrse, opening by longitudinal slits. Ovary superior, globose, trilocular, each locule containing a single, atropous, apical-axile, pendulous ovule; styluli 3, free or slightly connate at the base; stigmas feathery, papillate. Fruit drupaceous, 3-1-seeded, whitish or reddish to black at maturity. Seeds with copious, starchy endosperm and minute discoid embryo.

A monogeneric family with 2 spp. distributed from the Malay Peninsula to Sumatra, Borneo and many Pacific Islands.


The species occur on non-swampy soils in moderately humid to dry light forests, forest margins, thickets and mountain ridges up to more than 1900m above sea level (Backer 1951; Newell 1969). According to Linder 1987 they probably germinate exclusively on mineral soils and represent early successional plants.


Since there are no records from eastern Indonesia, New Guinea and Australia, Newell 1969 regarded the distribution of Joinvillea on the Malay Penisula, Sumatra, Borneo, and on many Pacific Islands as discontinuous.


  • 1 Toml. & A.C.Sm.(1970). Taxon
  • 2 Bayer, C. & Appel, O. Joinvilleaceae. Flowering Plants. Monocotyledons: Alismatanae and Commelinanae (except Gramineae) 249-251 (1998).
  • 3 Tomlinson, P.B. & Smith, A.C. Original publication of Joinvilleaceae. (1970).

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eMonocot. (2010, 1st November). Retrieved Wednesday, 8th February, 2012, from
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World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
WCSP 2014. 'World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. Facilitated by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the Internet; Retrieved 2011 onwards
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