- Group 1Lycophytes, Monilophytes
- Group 2Gymnosperms
- Group 3Monocots
- Group 4Woody angiosperms with opposite or whorled leaves
- Group 5Woody angiosperms with alternate leaves
- Group 6Herbaceous angiosperms with inferior ovaries
- Group 7Herbaceous angiosperms with superior ovaries and zygomorphic flowers
- Group 8Herbaceous angiosperms with superior ovaries, actinomorphic flowers, and 2 or more distinct carpels
- Group 9Herbaceous angiosperms with superior ovaries, actinomorphic flowers, connate petals, and a solitary carpel or 2 or more connate carpels
- Group 10Herbaceous angiosperms with superior ovaries, actinomorphic flowers, distinct petals or the petals lacking, and 2 or more connate carpels
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The Cornaceae have seen a number of changes, including the inclusion of the Nyssaceae and the dismantling of the long familiar genus Cornus (accepted by some authors). Multiple studies have shown that Cornus can be confidently split into four (or more) groups worldwide that are morphologically and phylogenetically distinct (Fan and Xiang 2001, Xiang et al. 2006). Further supporting the recognition of these groups are patterns of hybridization (interspecific hybrids are restricted to within the genera recognized here). Three of the four genera are represented in New England. Cornus s.s. (Cornelian cherry) does not occur in the region.
1b. Flowers with 4 petals, of 1 type—bisexual with 4 stamens; pith of woody species solid; leaves opposite, whorled, or alternate
2a. Aerial stems herbaceous, 0.1–0.2 m tall, with whorled leaves (sometimes opposite at some nodes); petals terminated by awns; leaves strongly dimorphic, those of the lower nodes many times smaller than those of the upper node (+/- monomorphic in rare putative hybrid individuals); inflorescence pseudanthial, a corymb-like cyme subtended by 4 white, petaloid bracts
2b. Aerial stems woody, 1–10 m tall, with opposite or whorled leaves; petals not awned at apex; leaves essentially monomorphic; inflorescence pseudanthial or not, with or without showy, petaloid bracts
Show photos of: Each photo represents one genus in this family.