Temporal range: Late Cretaceous–recent
Cock's-foot grass (Dactylis glomerata)
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Monocots
Clade: Commelinids
Diversity[citation needed]
About 1,420 genera

In plant taxonomy, commelinids (originally commelinoids[1][2]) is a clade of flowering plants within the monocots, distinguished by having cell walls containing ferulic acid.[3][4]

The commelinids are the only clade that the APG IV system has informally named within the monocots. The remaining monocots are a paraphyletic unit. Also known as the commelinid monocots it forms one of three groupings within the monocots, and the final branch; the other two groups are the alismatid monocots and the lilioid monocots.


Members of the commelinid clade have cell walls containing UV-fluorescent ferulic acid.[3][4]


The commelinids were first recognized as a formal group in 1967 by Armen Takhtajan, who named them the Commelinidae and assigned them to a subclass of Liliopsida (monocots).[5] The name was also used in the 1981 Cronquist system. However, by the release of his 1980 system of classification, Takhtajan had merged this subclass into a larger one, and no longer considered it to be a clade.[citation needed]

Takhtajan system

The Takhtajan system treated this as one of six subclasses within the class Liliopsida (=monocotyledons). It consisted of the following:[citation needed]

     subclass Commelinidae
          superorder Bromelianae
                    order Bromeliales
                    order Velloziales
          superorder Pontederianae
                    order Philydrales
                    order Pontederiales
                    order Haemodorales
          superorder Zingiberanae
                    order Musales
                    order Lowiales
                    order Zingiberales
                    order Cannales
          superorder Commelinanae
                    order Commelinales
                    order Mayacales
                    order Xyridales
                    order Rapateales
                    order Eriocaulales
          superorder Hydatellanae
                    order Hydatellales
          superorder Juncanae
                    order Juncales
                    order Cyperales
          superorder Poanae
                    order Flagellariales
                    order Restionales
                    order Centrolepidales
                    order Poales

Cronquist system

The Cronquist system treated this as one of four subclasses within the class Liliopsida. It consisted of the following:[citation needed]

     subclass Commelinidae
          order Commelinales
          order Eriocaulales
          order Restionales
          order Juncales
          order Cyperales
          order Hydatellales
          order Typhales

APG system

The APG II system does not use formal botanical names above the rank of order; most of the members were assigned to the clade commelinids in the monocots (its predecessor, the APG system used the clade commelinoids).[6][7] The commelinids now constitute a well-supported clade within the monocots,[8] and this clade has been recognized in all four APG classification systems.

Cladogram 1: The phylogenetic composition of the monocots[9]
monocots 131






Liliales 121


Asparagales 120

commelinids 118






Alismatid monocots


The commelinids of APG II (2003) and APG III (2009) contain essentially the same plants as the commelinoids of the earlier APG system (1998).[8] In APG IV (2016) the family Dasypogonaceae is no longer directly placed under commelinids but instead a family of order Arecales.[9]

clade monocots :
The current phylogeny and composition of the commelinids.[10]

See also


  1. ^ APG (1998). "An ordinal classification for the families of flowering plants". Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden. 85 (4): 531–553. doi:10.2307/2992015. JSTOR 2992015.
  2. ^ APG II (2003). "An Update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group Classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG II". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 141 (4): 399–436. doi:10.1046/j.1095-8339.2003.t01-1-00158.x.
  3. ^ a b Harris & Hartley 1976.
  4. ^ a b Dahlgren, R. M. T.; Rassmussen, F. (1983). "Monocotyledon evolution. Characters and phylogenetic estimation". Evolutionary Biology. Vol. 16. pp. 255–395. doi:10.1007/978-1-4615-6971-8_7. ISBN 978-1-4615-6973-2.
  5. ^ Takhtajan, A. (1967). Система и филогения цветковых растений (Systema et Phylogenia Magnoliophytorum). Moscow: Nauka.
  6. ^ the official APG website
  7. ^ "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG II". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 141 (4): 399–436. 2003. doi:10.1046/j.1095-8339.2003.t01-1-00158.x.
  8. ^ a b Cantino, Philip D.; James A. Doyle; Sean W. Graham; Walter S. Judd; Richard G. Olmstead; Douglas E. Soltis; Pamela S. Soltis; Michael J. Donoghue (2007). "Towards a phylogenetic nomenclature of Tracheophyta". Taxon. 56 (3): E1–E44. doi:10.2307/25065865. JSTOR 25065865.
  9. ^ a b APG IV 2016.
  10. ^ "An update of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group classification for the orders and families of flowering plants: APG III". Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. 161 (2): 105–121. 2009. doi:10.1111/j.1095-8339.2009.00996.x. hdl:10654/18083.