Flora of China
The flora of China is diverse. More than 30,000 plant species are native to China, representing nearly one-eighth of the world's total plant species, including thousands found nowhere else on Earth. China contains a variety of forest types. Both northeast and northwest reaches contain mountains and cold coniferous forests, supporting animal species which include moose and Asiatic black bear, along with some 120 types of birds. Moist conifer forests can have thickets of bamboo as an understorey, replaced by rhododendrons in higher montane stands of juniper and yew. Subtropical forests, which dominate central and southern China, support an astounding 146,000 species of flora. Tropical rainforest and seasonal rainforests, though confined to Yunnan and Hainan Island, contain a quarter of all the plant and animal species found in China; the flora of China has an online database which gives both its taxonomy. Media related to Flora of China at Wikimedia Commons eflora: Flora of China
The Cucurbitales are an order of flowering plants, included in the rosid group of dicotyledons. This order belongs to tropical areas, with limited presence in subtropic and temperate regions; the order includes trees, together with many herbs and climbers. One major characteristic of the Cucurbitales is the presence of unisexual flowers pentacyclic, with thick pointed petals; the pollination is performed by insects, but wind pollination is present. The order consists of 2600 species in eight families; the largest families are Begoniaceae with around 1500 species and Cucurbitaceae with around 900 species. These two families include the only economically important plants; the Cucurbitaceae include some food species, such as squash, pumpkin and cucumber and melons. The Begoniaceae are known for their horticultural species, of which there are over 130 with many more varieties; the Cucurbitales are an order of plants with a cosmopolitan distribution diverse in the tropics. Most are herbs, climber herbs, woody lianas or shrubs but some genera include canopy-forming evergreen lauroid trees.
Members of the Cucurbitales form an important component of low to montane tropical forest with greater representation in terms of the number of species. Although not known with certainty the total number of species in the order, conservative estimates indicate about 2600 species worldwide, distributed in 109 genera. Compared to other flowering plant orders, the taxonomy is poorly understood due to their great diversity, difficulty in identification, limited study; the order Cucurbitales in the eurosid I clade comprises 2600 species in 109 or 110 genera in eight families and temperate, of different sizes and ecology. It is a case of divergent evolution. In contrast, there is convergent evolution with other groups not related due to ecological or physical drivers toward a similar solution, including analogous structures; some species are trees. The patterns of speciation in the Cucurbitales are diversified in a high number of species, they have a pantropical distribution with centers of diversity in Africa, South America, Southeast Asia.
They most originated in West Gondwana 67–107 million years ago, so the oldest split could relate to the break-up of Gondwana in the middle Eocene to late Oligocene, 45–24 million years ago. The group reached their current distribution by multiple intercontinental dispersal events. One factor was product of aridification, other groups responded to favorable climatic periods and expanded across the available habitat, occurring as opportunistic species across wide distribution; the Cucurbitales comprise the families: Apodanthaceae, Begoniaceae, Corynocarpaceae, Cucurbitaceae and Datiscaceae. Some of the synapomorphies of the order are: leaves in spiral with secondary veins palmated, calyx or perianth valvate, the elevated stomatal calyx/perianth bearing separate styles; the two whorls are similar in texture. Tetrameles nudiflora is a tree of immense proportions of width; the genus Dendrosicyos, with the only species being the cucumber tree, is adapted to the arid semidesert island of Socotra. Deciduous perennial Cucurbitales lose all of their leaves for part of the year depending on variations in rainfall.
The leaf loss coincides with the dry season in tropical and arid regions. In temperate or polar climates, the dry season is due to the inability of the plant to absorb water available in the form of ice. Apodanthaceae are obligatory endoparasites that only emerge once a year in the form of small flowers that develop into small berries, however taxonomists have not agreed on the exact placement of this family within the Cucurbitales. Over half of the known members of this order belong to the diverse begonia family Begoniaceae, with around 1500 species in two genera. Before modern DNA-molecular classifications, some Cucurbitales species were assigned to orders as diverse as Ranunculales, Malpighiales and Rafflesiales. Early molecular studies revealed several surprises, such as the nonmonophyly of the traditional Datiscaceae, including Tetrameles and Octomeles, but the exact relationships among the families remain unclear; the lack of knowledge about the order in general is due to many species being found in countries with limited economic means or unstable political environments, factors unsuitable for plant collection and detailed study.
Thus the vast majority of species remain poorly determined, a future increase in the number of species is expected. Under the Cronquist system, the families Begoniaceae and Datiscaceae were placed in the order Violales, within the subclass Dilleniidae, with the Tetramelaceae subsumed into the Datiscaceae. Corynocarpaceae was placed in order Celastrales, Anisophylleaceae in order Rosales, both under subclass Rosidae. Coriariaceae was placed in Ranunculaceae, subclass Magnoliidae. Apodanthaceae was not recognised as a family, its genera being assigned to another parasitic plant family, the Rafflesiaceae; the present classification is due to APG III. Modern molecular phylogenetics suggest the following relationships: Judd WS, Campbell CS, Kellogg EA, Stevens PF, Donoghue MJ. "Cucurbitales". Plant Systematics: A Phylogenetic Approach. Sunderland, Massachusetts: Sinauer Associates. P
Plants are multicellular, predominantly photosynthetic eukaryotes of the kingdom Plantae. Plants were treated as one of two kingdoms including all living things that were not animals, all algae and fungi were treated as plants. However, all current definitions of Plantae exclude the fungi and some algae, as well as the prokaryotes. By one definition, plants form the clade Viridiplantae, a group that includes the flowering plants and other gymnosperms and their allies, liverworts and the green algae, but excludes the red and brown algae. Green plants obtain most of their energy from sunlight via photosynthesis by primary chloroplasts that are derived from endosymbiosis with cyanobacteria, their chloroplasts contain b, which gives them their green color. Some plants are parasitic or mycotrophic and have lost the ability to produce normal amounts of chlorophyll or to photosynthesize. Plants are characterized by sexual reproduction and alternation of generations, although asexual reproduction is common.
There are about 320 thousand species of plants, of which the great majority, some 260–290 thousand, are seed plants. Green plants provide a substantial proportion of the world's molecular oxygen and are the basis of most of Earth's ecosystems on land. Plants that produce grain and vegetables form humankind's basic foods, have been domesticated for millennia. Plants have many cultural and other uses, as ornaments, building materials, writing material and, in great variety, they have been the source of medicines and psychoactive drugs; the scientific study of plants is known as a branch of biology. All living things were traditionally placed into one of two groups and animals; this classification may date from Aristotle, who made the distincton between plants, which do not move, animals, which are mobile to catch their food. Much when Linnaeus created the basis of the modern system of scientific classification, these two groups became the kingdoms Vegetabilia and Animalia. Since it has become clear that the plant kingdom as defined included several unrelated groups, the fungi and several groups of algae were removed to new kingdoms.
However, these organisms are still considered plants in popular contexts. The term "plant" implies the possession of the following traits multicellularity, possession of cell walls containing cellulose and the ability to carry out photosynthesis with primary chloroplasts; when the name Plantae or plant is applied to a specific group of organisms or taxon, it refers to one of four concepts. From least to most inclusive, these four groupings are: Another way of looking at the relationships between the different groups that have been called "plants" is through a cladogram, which shows their evolutionary relationships; these are not yet settled, but one accepted relationship between the three groups described above is shown below. Those which have been called "plants" are in bold; the way in which the groups of green algae are combined and named varies between authors. Algae comprise several different groups of organisms which produce food by photosynthesis and thus have traditionally been included in the plant kingdom.
The seaweeds range from large multicellular algae to single-celled organisms and are classified into three groups, the green algae, red algae and brown algae. There is good evidence that the brown algae evolved independently from the others, from non-photosynthetic ancestors that formed endosymbiotic relationships with red algae rather than from cyanobacteria, they are no longer classified as plants as defined here; the Viridiplantae, the green plants – green algae and land plants – form a clade, a group consisting of all the descendants of a common ancestor. With a few exceptions, the green plants have the following features in common, they undergo closed mitosis without centrioles, have mitochondria with flat cristae. The chloroplasts of green plants are surrounded by two membranes, suggesting they originated directly from endosymbiotic cyanobacteria. Two additional groups, the Rhodophyta and Glaucophyta have primary chloroplasts that appear to be derived directly from endosymbiotic cyanobacteria, although they differ from Viridiplantae in the pigments which are used in photosynthesis and so are different in colour.
These groups differ from green plants in that the storage polysaccharide is floridean starch and is stored in the cytoplasm rather than in the plastids. They appear to have had a common origin with Viridiplantae and the three groups form the clade Archaeplastida, whose name implies that their chloroplasts were derived from a single ancient endosymbiotic event; this is the broadest modern definition of the term'plant'. In contrast, most other algae not only have different pigments but have chloroplasts with three or four surrounding membranes, they are not close relatives of the Archaeplastida having acquired chloroplasts separately from ingested or symbiotic green and red algae. They are thus not included in the broadest modern definition of the plant kingdom, although they were in the past; the green plants or Viridiplantae were traditionally divided into the green algae (including
The eudicots, Eudicotidae or eudicotyledons are a clade of flowering plants, called tricolpates or non-magnoliid dicots by previous authors. The botanical terms were introduced in 1991 by evolutionary botanist James A. Doyle and paleobotanist Carol L. Hotton to emphasize the evolutionary divergence of tricolpate dicots from earlier, less specialized, dicots; the close relationships among flowering plants with tricolpate pollen grains was seen in morphological studies of shared derived characters. These plants have a distinct trait in their pollen grains of exhibiting three colpi or grooves paralleling the polar axis. Molecular evidence confirmed the genetic basis for the evolutionary relationships among flowering plants with tricolpate pollen grains and dicotyledonous traits; the term means "true dicotyledons", as it contains the majority of plants that have been considered dicots and have characteristics of the dicots. The term "eudicots" has subsequently been adopted in botany to refer to one of the two largest clades of angiosperms, monocots being the other.
The remaining angiosperms include magnoliids and what are sometimes referred to as basal angiosperms or paleodicots, but these terms have not been or adopted, as they do not refer to a monophyletic group. The other name for the eudicots is tricolpates, a name which refers to the grooved structure of the pollen. Members of the group have tricolpate pollen; these pollens have three or more pores set in furrows called colpi. In contrast, most of the other seed plants produce monosulcate pollen, with a single pore set in a differently oriented groove called the sulcus; the name "tricolpates" is preferred by some botanists to avoid confusion with the dicots, a nonmonophyletic group. Numerous familiar plants are eudicots, including many common food plants and ornamentals; some common and familiar eudicots include members of the sunflower family such as the common dandelion, the forget-me-not and other members of its family, buttercup and macadamia. Most leafy trees of midlatitudes belong to eudicots, with notable exceptions being magnolias and tulip trees which belong to magnoliids, Ginkgo biloba, not an angiosperm.
The name "eudicots" is used in the APG system, of 1998, APG II system, of 2003, for classification of angiosperms. It is applied to a monophyletic group, which includes most of the dicots. "Tricolpate" is a synonym for the "Eudicot" monophyletic group, the "true dicotyledons". The number of pollen grain furrows or pores helps classify the flowering plants, with eudicots having three colpi, other groups having one sulcus. Pollen apertures are any modification of the wall of the pollen grain; these modifications include thinning and pores, they serve as an exit for the pollen contents and allow shrinking and swelling of the grain caused by changes in moisture content. The elongated apertures/ furrows in the pollen grain are called colpi, along with pores, are a chief criterion for identifying the pollen classes; the eudicots can be divided into two groups: the basal eudicots and the core eudicots. Basal eudicot is an informal name for a paraphyletic group; the core eudicots are a monophyletic group.
A 2010 study suggested the core eudicots can be divided into two clades, Gunnerales and a clade called "Pentapetalae", comprising all the remaining core eudicots. The Pentapetalae can be divided into three clades: Dilleniales superrosids consisting of Saxifragales and rosids superasterids consisting of Santalales, Berberidopsidales and asteridsThis division of the eudicots is shown in the following cladogram: The following is a more detailed breakdown according to APG IV, showing within each clade and orders: clade Eudicots order Ranunculales order Proteales order Trochodendrales order Buxales clade Core eudicots order Gunnerales order Dilleniales clade Superrosids order Saxifragales clade Rosids order Vitales clade Fabids order Fabales order Rosales order Fagales order Cucurbitales order Oxalidales order Malpighiales order Celastrales order Zygophyllales clade Malvids order Geraniales order Myrtales order Crossosomatales order Picramniales order Malvales order Brassicales order Huerteales order Sapindales clade Superasterids order Berberidopsidales order Santalales order Caryophyllales clade Asterids order Cornales order Ericales clade Campanulids order Aquifoliales order Asterales order Escalloniales order Bruniales order Apiales order Dipsacales order Paracryphiales clade Lamiids order Solanales order Lamiales order Vahliales order Gentianales order Boraginales order Garryales order Metteniusales order Icacinales Eudicots at the Encyclopedia of Life Eudicots, Tree of Life Web Project Dicots Plant Life Forms
India known as the Republic of India, is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh largest country by area and with more than 1.3 billion people, it is the second most populous country as well as the most populous democracy in the world. Bounded by the Indian Ocean on the south, the Arabian Sea on the southwest, the Bay of Bengal on the southeast, it shares land borders with Pakistan to the west. In the Indian Ocean, India is in the vicinity of Sri Lanka and the Maldives, while its Andaman and Nicobar Islands share a maritime border with Thailand and Indonesia; the Indian subcontinent was home to the urban Indus Valley Civilisation of the 3rd millennium BCE. In the following millennium, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism began to be composed. Social stratification, based on caste, emerged in the first millennium BCE, Buddhism and Jainism arose. Early political consolidations took place under the Gupta empires. In the medieval era, Zoroastrianism and Islam arrived, Sikhism emerged, all adding to the region's diverse culture.
Much of the north fell to the Delhi Sultanate. The economy expanded in the 17th century in the Mughal Empire. In the mid-18th century, the subcontinent came under British East India Company rule, in the mid-19th under British Crown rule. A nationalist movement emerged in the late 19th century, which under Mahatma Gandhi, was noted for nonviolent resistance and led to India's independence in 1947. In 2017, the Indian economy was the world's sixth largest by nominal GDP and third largest by purchasing power parity. Following market-based economic reforms in 1991, India became one of the fastest-growing major economies and is considered a newly industrialised country. However, it continues to face the challenges of poverty, corruption and inadequate public healthcare. A nuclear weapons state and regional power, it has the second largest standing army in the world and ranks fifth in military expenditure among nations. India is a federal republic governed under a parliamentary system and consists of 29 states and 7 union territories.
A pluralistic and multi-ethnic society, it is home to a diversity of wildlife in a variety of protected habitats. The name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindush, equivalent to the Sanskrit word Sindhu, the historical local appellation for the Indus River; the ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi, which translates as "The people of the Indus". The geographical term Bharat, recognised by the Constitution of India as an official name for the country, is used by many Indian languages in its variations, it is a modernisation of the historical name Bharatavarsha, which traditionally referred to the Indian subcontinent and gained increasing currency from the mid-19th century as a native name for India. Hindustan is a Middle Persian name for India, it was introduced into India by the Mughals and used since then. Its meaning varied, referring to a region that encompassed northern India and Pakistan or India in its entirety; the name may refer to either the northern part of India or the entire country.
The earliest known human remains in South Asia date to about 30,000 years ago. Nearly contemporaneous human rock art sites have been found in many parts of the Indian subcontinent, including at the Bhimbetka rock shelters in Madhya Pradesh. After 6500 BCE, evidence for domestication of food crops and animals, construction of permanent structures, storage of agricultural surplus, appeared in Mehrgarh and other sites in what is now Balochistan; these developed into the Indus Valley Civilisation, the first urban culture in South Asia, which flourished during 2500–1900 BCE in what is now Pakistan and western India. Centred around cities such as Mohenjo-daro, Harappa and Kalibangan, relying on varied forms of subsistence, the civilization engaged robustly in crafts production and wide-ranging trade. During the period 2000–500 BCE, many regions of the subcontinent transitioned from the Chalcolithic cultures to the Iron Age ones; the Vedas, the oldest scriptures associated with Hinduism, were composed during this period, historians have analysed these to posit a Vedic culture in the Punjab region and the upper Gangetic Plain.
Most historians consider this period to have encompassed several waves of Indo-Aryan migration into the subcontinent from the north-west. The caste system, which created a hierarchy of priests and free peasants, but which excluded indigenous peoples by labeling their occupations impure, arose during this period. On the Deccan Plateau, archaeological evidence from this period suggests the existence of a chiefdom stage of political organisation. In South India, a progression to sedentary life is indicated by the large number of megalithic monuments dating from this period, as well as by nearby traces of agriculture, irrigation tanks, craft traditions. In the late Vedic period, around the 6th century BCE, the small states and chiefdoms of the Ganges Plain and the north-western regions had consolidated into 16 major oligarchies and monarchies that were known as the mahajanapadas; the emerging urbanisation gave rise to non-Vedic religious movements, two of which became independent religions. Jainism came into prominence during the life of Mahavira.
Buddhism, based on the teachings of Gautama Buddha, attracted followers from all social classes excepting the middle
Taiwan the Republic of China, is a state in East Asia. Neighbouring states include the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the northeast, the Philippines to the south. Taiwan is the most populous state and largest economy, not a member of the United Nations; the island of Taiwan was inhabited by indigenous peoples for thousands of years before the 17th century, when Dutch colonialists opened the island to mass Han immigration. After a brief rule by the Kingdom of Tungning, the island was annexed in 1683 by the Qing dynasty of China, ceded to Japan in 1895. Following the surrender of Japan in 1945, the Republic of China, which had overthrown and succeeded the Qing in 1911, took control of Taiwan; the resumption of the Chinese Civil War led to the loss of the mainland to the Communists and the flight of the ROC government to Taiwan in 1949. Although the ROC government continued to claim to be the legitimate representative of China, since 1950 its effective jurisdiction has been limited to Taiwan and several small islands.
In the early 1960s, Taiwan entered a period of industrialisation. In the 1980s and early 1990s, it changed from a one-party military dictatorship to a multi-party democracy with a semi-presidential system; as a founding member, the ROC represented China in the UN until it was replaced by the PRC in 1971. The PRC has claimed sovereignty over Taiwan and refused diplomatic relations with any country that recognises the ROC; as of 2019, Taiwan maintains official ties with 16 out of 193 UN member states. Most international organisations in which the PRC participates either refuse to grant membership to Taiwan or allow it to participate only as a non-state actor. Most major powers maintain unofficial ties with Taiwan through representative offices and institutions that function as de facto embassies and consulates. In Taiwan, the major political division is between parties favouring eventual Chinese unification and promoting a Chinese identity contrasted with those aspiring to independence and promoting a Taiwanese identity, though both sides have moderated their positions to broaden their appeal.
Taiwan is a high-income advanced economy, with a skilled and educated workforce. It has the 22nd-largest economy in the world, its high-tech industry plays a key role in the global economy, it is urbanised, is one of the most densely populated countries in the world, with most of the population concentrated on the western coast. The state is ranked in terms of civil and political liberties, health care and human development. Various names for the island of Taiwan remain in use today, each derived from explorers or rulers during a particular historical period; the name Formosa dates from 1542, when Portuguese sailors sighted an uncharted island and noted it on their maps as Ilha Formosa. The name Formosa "replaced all others in European literature" and remained in common use among English speakers into the 20th century. In the early 17th century, the Dutch East India Company established a commercial post at Fort Zeelandia on a coastal sandbar called "Tayouan", after their ethnonym for a nearby Taiwanese aboriginal tribe Taivoan people, written by the Dutch and Portuguese variously as Taiouwang, Teijoan, etc.
This name was adopted into the Chinese vernacular as the name of the sandbar and nearby area. The modern word "Taiwan" is derived from this usage, seen in various forms in Chinese historical records; the area occupied by modern-day Tainan represented the first permanent settlement by both European colonists and Chinese immigrants. The settlement grew to be the island's most important trading centre and served as its capital until 1887. Use of the current Chinese name became official as early as 1684 with the establishment of Taiwan Prefecture. Through its rapid development the entire Formosan mainland became known as "Taiwan". In his Daoyi Zhilüe, Wang Dayuan used "Liuqiu" as a name for the island of Taiwan, or the part of it closest to Penghu. Elsewhere, the name was used for the Ryukyu Islands in general or Okinawa, the largest of them; the name appears in the Book of Sui and other early works, but scholars cannot agree on whether these references are to the Ryukyus, Taiwan or Luzon. The official name of the state is the "Republic of China".
Shortly after the ROC's establishment in 1912, while it was still located on the Chinese mainland, the government used the short form "China" to refer to itself, which derives from zhōng and guó, a term which developed under the Zhou dynasty in reference to its royal demesne, the name was applied to the area around Luoyi during the Eastern Zhou and to China's Central Plain before being used as an occasional synonym for the state during the Qing era. During the 1950s and 1960s, after the government had withdrawn to Taiwan upon losing the Chinese Civil War, it was referred to as "Nationalist China" to differentiate it from "Communist China", it was a member of the United Nations representing "China" until 1971, when it lost its seat to the People's Republic of China. Over subsequent decades, the Republic of China has become known as "Taiwan", after the island that comprises 99% of the territory under its control. In some contexts ROC government publications, the name is written as "
The rosids are members of a large clade of flowering plants, containing about 70,000 species, more than a quarter of all angiosperms. The clade is divided into 16 to 20 orders, depending upon circumscription and classification; these orders, in turn, together comprise about 140 families. Fossil rosids are known from the Cretaceous period. Molecular clock estimates indicate that the rosids originated in the Aptian or Albian stages of the Cretaceous, between 125 and 99.6 million years ago. The name is based upon the name "Rosidae", understood to be a subclass. In 1967, Armen Takhtajan showed that the correct basis for the name "Rosidae" is a description of a group of plants published in 1830 by Friedrich Gottlieb Bartling; the clade was renamed "Rosidae" and has been variously delimited by different authors. The name "rosids" is informal and not assumed to have any particular taxonomic rank like the names authorized by the ICBN; the rosids are monophyletic based upon evidence found by molecular phylogenetic analysis.
Three different definitions of the rosids were used. Some authors included the orders Vitales in the rosids. Others excluded both of these orders; the circumscription used in this article is that of the APG IV classification, which includes Vitales, but excludes Saxifragales. The rosids and Saxifragales form the superrosids clade; this is one of three groups that compose the Pentapetalae, the others being Dilleniales and the superasterids. The rosids consist of two groups: the eurosids; the eurosids, in turn, are divided into two groups: malvids. The rosids consist of 17 orders. In addition to Vitales, there are 8 orders in malvids; some of the orders have only been recognized. These are Vitales, Crossosomatales and Huerteales; the phylogeny of Rosids shown below is adapted from the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group website. The nitrogen-fixing clade contains a high number of actinorhizal plants. Not all plants in this clade are actinorhizal, however. Media related to Rosids at Wikimedia Commons