Lauraceae

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Description: A family of trees and shrubs with simple, alternate leaves and no stipules. Unlike Annonaceae and Myristicaceae, the Lauraceae have irregularly spiraled leaves (not distichous). The venation of the leaves is also less regular than in other Magnoliid families. The Lauraceae odor is particularly strong and often a little bit smoky. It can range from sweet to rank and fishy. The bark is weak, unlike Annonaceae. Many Lauraceae fruits are dispersed by large birds, especially toucans and guans. The fruits are often oily rather than sweet— think of an avocado.

Economic uses: The avocado (Persea americana), bay leaves (Laurus bougustia, Laurus nobilis), and cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylandicum) belong to this family.


Descripción: Una familia de árboles y arbustos con hojas simples, alternas, y sin estípulas. A diferencia de las Annonaceas y las Myristicaceas, las Lauraceas no tienen hojas en posición dística. Sus hojas estan distribuidas irregularmente en espiral. El patrón de las venas es menos regular que en las demás familias de Magnoliides. El olor de Lauraceas es muy fuerte y a veces huele un poco a humo. Puede ser dulce, a canela, o fétido, similar a pescado podrido. Pájaros de gran tamaño, especialmente tucanes y pavones, dispersan las semillas de las Lauraceas. Los frutos, por lo general, son aceitosas, no dulces — como el aguacate.

Usos económicos: El aguacate (Persea americana), el laurel (Laurus bougustia, Laurus nobilis), y la canela (Cinnamomum zeylandicum) pertenecen a esta familia.


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