Taxonomic revision of Croton sect. Lamprocroton (Müll. Arg.) Pax (Euphorbiaceae s.s.)


  • Letícia Ribes de Lima Instituto de Botânica, Seção de Curadoria do Herbário
  • José Rubens Pirani Universidade de São Paulo, Instituto de Biociências, Departamento de Botânica


Croton, Euphorbiaceae, floristic, taxonomic revision


Croton is the second bigger and more diverse genus in the family Euphorbiaceae, with about 1,200 species distributed in 40 sections, occurring in all tropical areas, most of them in Americas. In South America, Brazil is the country in which a larger number of taxa are found, ca. 356. According to recent classification, the genus belongs to the tribe Crotoneae, and despite the wide and morphological diversity, it would be a monophyletic taxon. However, a phylogenetic analysis using markers of ITS region from nuclear ribosomal DNA, and of trnL-F from plastidial DNA, showed that Croton, like traditionally circumscribed, is not a monophyletic taxon. A taxonomic revision of Croton section Lamprocroton (Müll. Arg.) Pax is presented here. It is a Neotropical group with most of its species occurring from Southeast and South Brazil to southern South America (Uruguay and Argentina). Morphologically, the members of Lamprocroton are characterized as monoecious or dioecious shrubs or subshrubs, with a lepidote indumentum at least in part of foliage, entire leaves with no glands. The staminate flowers have 9 to 16 stamens and the pistillate flowers may have equal or unequal sepals, reduced to absent petals, and styles once or twice bifid. Overall, are recognized 26 species in the group, three of them new to the science. Identification key, morphological descriptions, illustrations, phenological period, as well as data on geographic distribution and general comments of each species are presented. Four taxa were excluded from C. sect. Lamprocroton because they do not show the morphological features that are diagnostics of the section. Four species that are poorly known were not included in the taxonomic treatment.




How to Cite

Lima, L. R. de, & Pirani, J. R. (2008). Taxonomic revision of Croton sect. Lamprocroton (Müll. Arg.) Pax (Euphorbiaceae s.s.). Biota Neotropica, 8(2). Retrieved from //



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