In botany, an umbel is an inflorescence that consists of a number of short flower stalks (called pedicels) that spread from a common point, somewhat like umbrella ribs. The word was coined in botanical usage in the 1590s, from Latin umbella "parasol, sunshade".[1] The arrangement can vary from being flat-topped to almost spherical. Umbels can be simple or compound. The secondary umbels of compound umbels are known as umbellules[2] or umbellets.[3] A small umbel is called an umbellule.[3] The arrangement of the inflorescence in umbels is referred to as umbellate, or occasionally subumbellate (almost umbellate).

Umbels are a characteristic of plants such as carrot, parsley, dill, and fennel in the family Apiaceae; ivy, Aralia and Fatsia in the family Araliaceae; and onion (Allium) in the family Alliaceae.

An umbel is a type of indeterminate inflorescence.[3][4] A compressed cyme, which is a determinate inflorescence, is called umbelliform if it resembles an umbel.

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References

  1. ^ umbel etymology
  2. ^ Menglan She, Fading Pu, Zehui Pan, Mark Watson, John F. M. Cannon, Ingrid Holmes-Smith, Eugene V. Kljuykov, Loy R. Phillippe & Michael G. Pimenov. "Apiaceae Lindley". Flora of China. Vol. 14. Retrieved 15 January 2019 – via eFloras.org, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.((citation)): CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  3. ^ a b c Beentje, H.; Williamson, J. (2010). The Kew Plant Glossary: an Illustrated Dictionary of Plant Terms. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew: Kew Publishing.
  4. ^ Walters, D.R.; Keil, D.J. (1975). Vascular Plant Taxonomy. Dubuque: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company.

Further reading