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Electronic Flora of South Australia
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Electronic Flora of South Australia genus Fact Sheet

Family: Scrophulariaceae

Citation: L., Sp. Pl. 604 (1753).

Derivation: Greek euphrasia, good cheer, delight, joy; alluding to the attractive flowers or even, it is suggested, to some European species which are used to remedy eye disorders.

Synonymy: Not Applicable

Common name: Eyebrights, euphrasias.

Semiparasitic herbs or undershrubs, with rootlets often connected to those of other plants by nodular swellings (haustoria); leaves opposite, decussate, lower surface with patches of sessile glands between the veins, usually serrate or crenate.

Inflorescences terminal spike-like racemes or rarely (outside Aust.) solitary; bracts similar to the leaves; calyx 4-lobed, with median clefts longer or (outside S. Aust.) equal to the lateral clefts; corolla 2-lipped, the upper lip hooded, with 2 recurved lobes, the lower lip with 3 spreading lobes; stamens 4, in pairs of unequal length, the anthers either forming a U-configuration by fusion along the margins, with the posterior pair free from each other, dehiscing by hair-lined slits or rarely (outside Aust.) free and glabrous; ovary 2-celled, the stigma unequally 2-lobed; ovules (in Aust.) many.

Capsule loculicidal; seeds many, obliquely ellipsoid, longitudinally ribbed, scalariform between.

Distribution:  About 170 species, although many outside Australia are poorly differentiated "microspecies", in temperate and mountain regions of both hemispheres; 18 species in temperate Aust. (W. R. Barker (1982) Taxonomic studies in Euphrasia L. (Scrophulariaceae). A revised infrageneric classification, and a revision of the genus in Australia. J. Adelaide Bot. Gard. 5:1-304).

Biology: No text

Key to Species:
1. Perennial branches developing in sporadic nodes in no fixed sequence; corolla white to lilac, sometimes with a yellow blotch in the mouth
E. collina 1.
1. Annual branches developing basipetally in consecutive nodes from just below the inflorescence; corolla yellow
E. scabra 2.

Author: Not yet available

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