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The Apiaceae (Umbelliferae) of sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar have remained scientifically poorly known despite their critical importance in understanding the early evolutionary history of the family. This scientific review gives a bird's eye view of the morphological and anatomical diversity of the family in Africa and Madagascar. African Apiaceae is aimed at helping botanists, ecologists and conservationists to identify the remarkable African members of the family. It will hopefully also inspire the younger generation of botanists to expand our knowledge of the family. It is likely that more exciting discoveries still await us.
- African Apiaceae provides an introduction to the structural diversity in the family and gives the correct botanical terminology – especially for the interesting fruits (schizocarps) that are typical of the family.
- Descriptions and illustrations for all 77 genera and 368 known species are provided, as well as a key to the genera.
- Introductory chapters focus on habit (growth form) and roots, leaves, synflorescences, flowers, fruits, chromosome numbers, pollinators, chemistry, plant uses, and phylogenetic relationships of African Apiaceae.
- Includes a checklist of the Apiaceae of sub-Saharan Africa and Madagascar as well as an extensive list of references
Ben-Erik van Wyk is a professor of botany at the University of Johannesburg, with a research interest in plant taxonomy and useful plants. He is the author and co-author of 16 books and some 270 research papers in peer- reviewed journals.
Patricia May Tilney is also a professor of botany at the University of Johannesburg. Her speciality research field is plant anatomy, with a strong emphasis on the family Apiaceae. She joined the Apiaceae programme in 1992 and has become an expert on the carpology and fruit anatomy of the family. Patricia is the author or co-author of over 70 research papers, dealing mainly with the taxonomy and anatomy of the Apiaceae. She co-hosted the 5th International Apiales Conference in Pretoria in 2003.
Anthony Richard Magee is a senior researcher based at the Compton Herbarium, Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens, Cape Town. He obtained a PhD degree at the University of Johannesburg in 2008, for multi-disciplinary research on African Apiaceae, which included molecular systematic studies. His studies of Apiaceae resulted in 15 papers in leading botanical journals and include a new tribal classification system for the protoapioids, new generic delimitations and taxonomic revisions of several genera.