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A family of herbs or low shrubs, rarely tree-like, that have alternate lobed or compound stipulate leaves. The flowers are regular, usually pentamerous with free petals and sepals, and usually with twice as many stamens as petals, a superior 3–5-celled ovary, and usually a long beak bearing the free stigmas. The fruit is a lobed capsule, the lobes usually 1-seeded, sometimes separating. There are 14 genera, with about 730 species, in temperate and tropical zones. Garden ‘geraniums’ are varieties of Pelargonium species from S. Africa, with slightly irregular, spurred flowers.

Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry.

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