SCROPHULARIACEAE - Figwort or Snapdragon Family

Herbs or undershrubs, several climbers, some root parasites

Leaves alternate, opposite, or whorled, simple

Flowers bisexual, zygomorphic, 5th stamen sometimes a staminode inserted on corolla, corolla 2-lipped, variable infls., flowers often large and showy

190 genera, 4000 species, cosmopolitan distribution

Major genera:
Pedicularis
Scrophularia
Verbascum - wooly mullein
Penstemon
Veronica  (atypical--with 4-merous perianth)

Economic importance: ornamentals, root parasites

Medicinal uses - Digitalis produces digitalin - a steroid used as a cardiac stimulant

Diagnostic characteristics: 5-merous (stamens 2 or 4), zygomorphic, corolla 2-lipped, sometimes a 5th staminode present, Scrophulariaceae can be easily mistaken for Lamiaceae but stems are not square and style is not gynobasic

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