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Ligustrum

See list of 4 species in this genus

Species of Ligustrum are commonly planted for hedges in New England. Some of the species found in the area are native to Asia and, in those regions, are subdivided into varieties. However, no detailed systematic work has been done to determine which infraspecific taxa are planted here. Therefore, the following keys separate privets only to the rank of species. Reference: Nesom (2009a).

  • 1a. Branchlets either glabrous or minutely and uniformly puberulent; leaf blades glabrous
    • 2a. Basal, connate portion of corolla 5–8 mm long, 1.5–3 times longer than the lobes [Fig. 735]; anthers surpassing the tips of the corolla lobes; panicle and branchlets glabrous
    • 2b. Basal, connate portion of corolla 2.5–3 mm long, approximately as long as the lobes or a little shorter [Fig. 736]; anthers not surpassing the tips of the corolla lobes; panicle and usually the branchlets minutely and uniformly puberulent
  • 1b. Branchlets pilose and/or pubescent with hairs of distinctly different lengths; leaf blades pubescent at least on the abaxial midrib or sometimes glabrous in L. obtusifolium

    • 3a. Basal, connate portion of corolla 2.5–3 mm long, slightly shorter to approximately as long as the lobes [Fig. 736], usually barely exserted from calyx; anthers 1–2 mm long, typically exserted beyond the tips of the corolla lobes; panicles 6–10 cm tall, relatively open, often interspersed with non-flowering branchlets; pedicels 1–5 mm long
    • 3b. Basal, connate portion of corolla 5–8 mm long, 1.5–3 times as long as the lobes (rarely only as long as lobes) [Fig. 735], evidently exserted from calyx; anthers 2–3 mm long, not surpassing the tips of the corolla lobes; panicles 1.5–4 cm tall, relatively compact, not usually interspersed with non-flowering branchlets; pedicels (0–) 0.5–2 mm long

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