Family description

Herbs, climbers, trees, sometimes with white sap.
Leaves alternate, spiral. Stipules absent.
Flowers in heads, usually with two types of flowers with the inner ones regular and tubular with fused petals (disk florets) and the outer ones bilateral symmetric (ray florests), calyx usually transformed to hairy 'pappus', ovary inferior, 1-locular, style split in two.
Fruits usually small, with hairs and wind dispersed.

General info

Distribution Wordwide. Largest family of flowering plants with ca. 23000 species. In the tropics not very common other than herbs and some trees.
Ecology All habitats, but most common on light rich open places.
Uses Ornamentals, edible leaves, medicinal use.
Similar to When flowering not easy to confuse with anything else.

Treated genera

  • Gochnatia
  • Mikania
  • Vernonia