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Language: Bilingual with general descriptions in English and morphological descriptions and keys in Latin
The Chenopodiaceae are very well represented in the Flora Iranica area with more than one third of the global total of genera present. But it is not an area of major autochthonous development for the family, rather an area with a rich representation of different ecological and phytogeographical elements. Levels of species endemism are much lower than in other major SW Asiatic families and only one genus, Halarchon, is endemic.
Taxonomically, it is an especially difficult family. There are several main reasons for this. There is a very high level of phenotypic plasticity and of facies variation throughout the plant's life cycle: juvenile plants frequently look very different from adult ones. There is also great variation, even within a particular taxon or plant, in the number and form of flower and fruit parts. Furthermore, herbarium specimens and their complementary field notes rarely provide all the information needed for accurate descriptions. Many species are very succulent and dried specimens often give a totally false impression of what the living plant looks like. A further major difficulty stems from problems of types and typification. Many widespread species were first described a long time ago and interpretation of their type specimens, if they can be traced, is often uncertain because of their inadequacy.
Numerous specimens in herbaria are so incomplete that they cannot be named. Often, collections are made at the wrong time of the year (too early). Almost all perennial and/or succulent species start fruiting from October onwards. This is optimum collecting time because fruits are usually essential for identification. Good field-notes are most important in complementing the dried specimen – preferably with photographs and spirit material.