Lauraceae: Characters, Economic, Distribution and Types

Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family

Diagnostic characteristics of Family Lauraceae:

The Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family comprises a wide (huge) range of trees and shrubs, many of which are aromatic (used for the purposes of scented purposes) and contain essential oils. Some diagnostic characters/features or distinguishing features of this family are discussed below:

1. Leaves:

Usually alternate, simple, and evergreen or deciduous. They are often aromatic (having pleasant smell) when crushed/cutted. The leaf venation of family Lauraceae tends to be pinnate or parallel-veined, and the margins can vary/depends from entire to serrated.

2. Flowers:

Typically small (tiny) and clustered, arranged/organized in inflorescences like panicles or umbels. The flowers are often bisexual (both male and female sex organs exists on the same flower), with a perianth that may consist of three (3) or six (6) tepals. There are usually six (6) stamens organized in two whorls (coils).

3. Fruit:

Fruits vary broadly within the family. They can be:
i- berries, ii- drupes, or iii- nuts,
and some have a single seed or multiple (more than one) seeds enclosed within it.

4. Aromatic Compounds:

Many species in the Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family contain essential/vital oils in their tissues, which contribute to their distinctive aroma. The presence of these aromatic compounds (they are used in scents) is a significant characteristic.

5. Wood:

The wood of Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family species is often valuable/treasures and used in timber due to its strength and durability.

6. Chemical Compounds:

Members of this family often contain specific/particular chemical compounds like:
i- alkaloids, ii- flavonoids, and iii- lignans
that are woody characteristics of the family.

These features collectively assist in identifying plants belonging (associated with) to the Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family family, but as with any botanical classification, variations/alternations and exceptions exist among different/various species within the family.

Floral Formula of Family Lauraceae:

Floral Formula of Family Lauraceae
Floral Formula of Family Lauraceae

Floral Diagram of Family Lauraceae:

Floral Diagram of Family Lauraceae
Floral Diagram of Family Lauraceae

Economic Importance of Family Lauraceae:

The Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family have following economically important plants due to their:

i- culinary, ii- medicinal, and iii- commercial value.

Some vital species are include:

1. Cinnamomum species:

The source of cinnamon, a highly prized spice used in:
i- cooking, ii- baking, and iii- traditional medicine.
Cinnamon comes from the inner bark of several trees within this genus of family Lauraceae.

2. Persea americana (Avocado):

Consumed globally on a higher scale (widely) for its nutritious and flavorful (sweet) fruit, used in various cuisines and dishes as well.

3. Laurus nobilis (Bay Laurel):

Known for its aromatic (pleasant smell) leaves, used as a culinary herb to flavor dishes (specially sweet dishes).

4. Litsea cubeba (May Chang):

Its essential oil is used in perfumery scents, aromatherapy (medical treatment), and for flavoring in the food and beverage industry on a wide range.

5. Ocotea species:

Specific species within this genus of family Lauraceae are used for their timber (wood), producing high-quality wood used in furniture making, construction, and cabinetry.

Additionally, some plants within the Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family family have medicinal properties and are used in traditional medicine for their:
i- anti-bacterial, ii- anti-fungal, and iii- anti-inflammatory properties.
The economic significance/importance of these plants extends across some industries, from food and spices to pharmaceuticals and timber production.

Pattern of distribution of Family Lauraceae:

The Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family Angiospermic Plants Family is globally distributed across the world, primarily in tropical and subtropical regions/areas. Some patterns in their distribution include:

1. Tropical Regions:

Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family species are prevalent in tropical areas/regions worldwide, especially in regions with warm climates and high humidity. Central and South America, Africa, Southeast Asia, and parts of Oceania are rich in Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family diversity.

2. Rainforests:

Many Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family species thrive in rainforest environments/areas due to the warm, moist circumstances/conditions. They can be found in both lowland and montaine rainforests areas.

3. Temperate Regions:

While more common in the tropics, some Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family species exist/found in temperate zones. For i.e, certain members of the family are found in temperate forests in: i- North America, ii- Europe, iii- and Asia.

4. Diverse Habitats:

Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family plants exhibit a broad range of ecological preferences. Some grow in lowland forests, others in mountainous zones/areas, and some in wetlands or drier regions/areas within their overall tropical or subtropical zone.

5. Endemism:

Some Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family species are endemic to specific regions/zones or islands, meaning they are found only in those particular areas of region due to unique environmental conditions/situations and isolation.

Overall, the Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family Angiospermic Plants Family shows a diverse distribution pattern, encompassing a broad range of habitats in tropical and subtropical regions/areas or zones across continents of the globe.

Common species of Family Lauraceae:

The Lauraceae Angiospermic Plants Family consists of a variety of plants, including many trees (fruity as well as non) and shrubs (bushes), some of which are commonly known and used. Here are a few:

  • Cinnamomum Verum: commonly known as Ceylon Cinnamon; produces the bark used to make true cinnamon.
  • Persea Americana: commonly known as Avocado; nutritious and creamy fruit.
  • Laurus Nobilis: commonly known as Bay Laurel; its leaves are used in cooking.
  • Litsea Cubeba: commonly known as May Chang; it has lemon-scented leaves and aromatic oil(used in scents etc.)
  • Lindera Benzoin: commonly known as Spicebush; aromatic leaves and red berries.


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