History and Current Status of Systematic Research with Araceae

Copyright © 2000 by Thomas B. Croat
Missouri Botanical Garden
P. O. Box 299
St. Louis, MO 63166

This is the second edition of an article that first appeared in Aroideana, Volume 21, 1998. This document is also available as a PDF file here. Adobe Acrobat Reader™, a free software, is required to view this PDF file.

Other Special General Works Dealing with Araceae

Many general works have already been cited that are general in nature but which have dealt, at least in part, with Araceae. These include all the general floristic works and even large monographic accounts such as Das Pflanzenreich and Pflanzenfamilien (cited above under Engler) but there are also many general works, both taxonomic and ecological, in which Araceae are included. These can be important sources of information for the family. Among these works are standard works (some cited elsewhere in this paper) describing broad scale systems of classification. These include Engler's Syllabus der Pflanzenfamilien (Melchior, 1964), as well as the classification systems by J. Hutchinson (Hutchinson, 1934, 1959), A. Lemée (Lemée, 1941), G. H. M. Lawrence, (Lawrence, 1964), A. B. Rendle (Rendle, 1930); A. Cronquist (1968), R. M. J. Dahlgren and H. J. Clifford (1982; Dahlgren et al., 1985).

Other general works that discuss important aspects of Araceae are those dealing with phytogeography (Willis, 1949), fruit dispersal (van der Pijl, 1969), ethnobotany (Duke & Vasquez, 1994), pollination systems (Faegri & van der Pijl, 1966), growth habits of monocotyledons (Holttum, 1955), and rheophytic plants (van Steenis, 1981, 1987). A few standard reference works dealing with horticultural plants are also important references. These include the Manual of Cultivated Plants (Bailey, 1949), The Standard Cyclopedia of Horticulture (Bailey, 1963), Hortus Third (Bailey & Bailey, 1976), Exotica 3 (Graf, 1963), Exotica 4 (Graf, 1982), Exotica International (Graf, 1985), Tropica (Graf, 1986) and Hortica (Graf, 1992), The New York Botanical Garden Illustrated Encyclopedia of Horticulture (Everett, 1980-1982), The New Royal Horticultural Society Dictionary of Gardening (Huxley, 1992), European Garden Flora (Walters et al., 1984); The RHS Encyclopedia of House Plants (Beckett, 1987), Index of Garden Plants (Griffiths, 1994), Pareys Blumengärtnerei (Encke, 1958), and In Gardens of Hawaii (Neal, 1965).

A few additional references are in effect dictionaries that give vital statistics and in some cases a list of all genera for each family. Among the earliest complete dictionary of this type was that by Ernst Ender (1864) who published his Index Aroidearum with an introduction by Karl Koch. In Genera Siphonogarum genera are arranged according to the Englerian system (Dalla Torre & Harms, 1900). This work gives details about the taxonomy of the family and is directly associated with a separate concise dictionary (Dalla Torre & Harms, 1958). In the Plant Book (Mabberley, 1987) genera are arranged alphabetically.

An important reference source for learning about floristic projects that might now, or in the future, deal with Araceae floras is Floristic Inventory of Tropical Countries by D. G. Campbell and H. D. Hammond (1989).


Please send your comments to Tom Croat at the address here.

This page was created by Scott E. Hyndman for the IAS on December 9, 2000.