Discussion in relation to previous studies

Gregory (1994) mentioned 38 papers that describe the wood of 2 trees and many shrub-like genera. Carlquist (2005) described 6 genera with 6 species in detail. The wood of the trees Balanites aegyptica and Guiacum officinale and of the shrubs Bulnesia sp. and Porlieria sp. are the most frequently described. Fahn et al. (1986) and Neumann et al. (2001) mainly described a few species of Fagonia, Zygophyllum and Nitraria of Israel and the Sahara. Cozzo (1948) and Roig and Videla (2006) characterized 4 genera from arid areas in Argentina. Carlquist (2005) found vestured vessel pits.

The present study confirms all former observations. The anatomical variability presented here is limited. Species with large vessels, e.g. Balanites and Nitraria are excluded here.

Present features in relation to the number of analyzed species

IAWA code

Total number of species frequency 7

1 growth rings distinct and recognizable 1

2 growth rings absent 4 2.1 only one ring 2

4 semi-ring-porous 1

5 diffuse-porous 2

6 vessels in intra-annual tangential rows 3

7 vessels in diagonal and/or radial patterns 1

8 vessels in dendritic patterns 1

9 vessels predominantly solitary 7 13 vessels with simple perforation plates 7 22 intervessel pits alternate 7 39.1 vessel cell-wall thickness >2 pm 2

40.1 earlywood vessels: tangential diameter <20 pm 1

40.2 earlywood vessels: tangential diameter 20-50 pm 5

50.1 100-200 vessels per mm2 in earlywood 6

50.2 200-1000 vessels per mm2 in earlywood 1

61 fiber pits small and simple to minutely bordered

62 fiber pits large and distinctly bordered

69 fibers thick-walled

70 fibers thin- to thick-walled

76 parenchyma apotracheal, diffuse and in aggregates

96 rays uniseriate

97 ray width predominantly 1-3 cells

104 ray: all cells procumbent (radial section)

105 ray: all cells upright or square 107 ray: heterocellular with 2-4 upright cell rows (radial section) 1 120 storied axial tissue (parenchyma, fibers, vessels, tangential section)

136 prismatic crystals present

R1 groups of sieve tubes present

R2 groups of sieve tubes in tangential rows

R3 distinct ray dilatations

R4 sclereids in phloem and cortex

R6 sclereids in radial rows

R6.1 sclereids in tangential rows

R8 with crystal druses

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