CLEOMACEAE Bercht. & J. Presl

Small family composed of 12 genera and about 260 species that traditionally has been included in the Capparaceae family, from which it differs by the persistence of a placental membrane in the fruit (replum). Molecular criteria (DNA) have recently linked Cleomaceae with the Cruciferae family (Brassicaceae). They are usually annual herbaceous plants, rarely woody perennials; generally with an unpleasant odour, distributed in tropical or subtropical arid areas. In North Africa it is represented by a single genus, Cleome, mainly composed of herbaceous species but with a few shrubby or subshrubby species.

Updated by: H. Sainz & J. Charco.