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Volume 5 is the third volume of nineteen on dicots to be published in the Flora of North America series. It treats more than 740 species in 74 genera and three families in the following orders of the subclass Caryophyllidae: Caryophyllales (Pink order); Polygonales (Buckwheat order); and Plumbaginales (Leadwort order). Approximately 60% of the species are endemic to North America north of Mexico, and 19% are known as naturalized elements of the flora.
Of the 74 genera treated, 20 are represented in the flora by introduced species, and 13 of the genera have all their species endemic to the region. One of the five largest genera in North America, Eriogonum (Polygonaceae), is represented in the flora area by 225 of its 248 species, with nearly 200 of them endemic. Each of the genera treated in the volume has one or more representative species illustrated with a line drawing. These, in combination with the key and descriptions, will facilitate identification of the group of plants.
"A major event in botany."
– The New York Times
" [...] will be the definitive work well into the next century."
– Library Journal
"Flora of North America moves forward steadily, remorselessly, impressively [...] The level of detail makes the work accessible to a range of users, and the text is clearly written and set out for the non-specialist."
– Plant Talk
"Gleaming with careful scholarship [...] As with most of the contributions, the discussions, in addition to the keys and the descriptions, offer valuable insights by the leading experts [...] It is a privilege to access this wealth of botanical information."
– Richard Felger, Economic Botany
"Each of the genera has one or more representative species illustrated with a lone drawing, and entries include distribution maps for the native and established species. The editors also provide a comprehensive bibliography. This encyclopedic treatment can serve as a plant identifier and a systematic conspectus of North American flora."
– Reference & Research Book News