RUBIACEAE - Coffee or Madder Family

Trees, shrubs and rarely herbs (Most N.A. members of this family are herbs)

Leaves opposite or whorled, simple and entire, stipules united and large as leaf blades

Flowers usually small, bisexual, actinomorphic, sometimes slightly zygomorphic, infls. cymose, solitary to capitate

Fruit a capsule, berry or drupe, schizocarp

450 genera, 6500 species mostly subtropical and tropical

Common genera:
Hedyotis - Bluets
Gardenia - ornamental
Caffea - coffee
Galium - Bedstraw

Economic importance: coffee, quinine (Cinchona), Gardenias

Diagnostic characteristics: herbs (in N.A.), large stipules, opposite or whorled leaves. Can be confused with Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle family) but Caprifoliaceae do not have stipules