Gnetum L.

About 30 tropical species of small trees or climbing plants with opposite leathery leaves like those of the flowering plants. Flowers in whorls protected by fused bracts. Seed with a hard seed coat and fleshy covering. Only grown in botanical gardens for their botanical interest.

1 genus, c.30 spp of tropical America, W Africa and tropical Asia.

Throughout the tropics the starchy seeds are cooked and eaten. In Asia the shoots are sometimes used to make string.

Source: Spencer, R. (1995). Ephedraceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 1, Ferns, conifers & their allies. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

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kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Gnetopsida
order     Gnetales
family      Gnetaceae