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Thyrsanthella (Baillon) Pichon. Climbing Dogbane.

A monotypic genus, a liana, of se. North America (Endress et al. 2018). This species has been traditionally treated as the only North American taxon of Trachelospermum, an otherwise se. Asian genus of about 15-20 species. Such a treatment is untenable, however, as morphological and molecular evidence clearly show that our native taxon is only distantly related to Asian Trachelospermum (Livshultz et al. 2007); it is most closely related to the small genus Pinochia M.E. Endress & B.F. Hansen, of the Greater Antilles, Mexico, and Central America (Endress & Hansen 2007).

ID notes: Sterile Thyrsanthella difformis is sometimes mistaken at a glance for Gelsemium (both woody vines with opposite lanceolate leaves), but in the field the milky sap of Thyrsanthella provides an immediate identifying characteristic.

Ref: Endress & Hansen (2007); Endress et al. (2018) In Kadereit & Bittrich (2018); Livshultz et al. (2007). Show full citations.

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