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Myrtaceae is the ninth largest flowering plant family; it is economically important in the production of timber, gums, essential oils, fruits and spices, and contains many commonly cultivated ornamentals. The family is particularly rich in large genera, often found in some of the world's most threatened ecosystems, where their fruits comprise an important part of the diet of primates and birds. The similarity of Myrtaceae species is high, and its taxonomic and nomenclatural history is complex, resulting in notorious difficulties in basic identification, inventory compilation and floristic treatment.
The World Checklist of Myrtaceae is a much needed work that lists all validly published names in the family, providing the source of their publication and indicating which names are currently accepted and which are synonyms. It will be respected as the standard nomenclatural reference for further research into this important family.