The Lobeliaceae are herbs, shrubs, or rarely small trees comprising about xx genera and xxx species usually with milky sap. The leaves are nearly always alternate and simple; stipules are absent The flowers are bisexual and zygomorphic. The perianth and androecium are usually 5-merous. The calyx and corolla each consist of connate segments. The stamens equal the number of corolla lobes, alternate with them, and are adnate to the extreme base of the corolla or epigynous zone or more commonly arise from the annular epigynous nectary disk; the filaments and anthers are usually firmly connate, anthers are introrse. The gynoecium consists of a single compound pistil of usually 2 carpels and locules with numerous axile ovules. The ovary is nearly always inferior and is generally crowned with an epigynous annular nectary disk. The fruit is usually a capsule or berry.

Each "thumbnail" image below is linked to a larger photograph.

Brighamia insignis, alula (Lobelioideae). This rare and unusual cabbage-like Hawaiian endemic lobelioid is found only on nearly vertical cliff faces of Kaua'i and Ni'ihau.  More images of this endemic Hawaiian genus at Brighamia
Clermontia kakeana, 'oha (Lobelioideae). This Hawaiian endemic lobelioid genus includes freely branched shrubs and small trees.  More images of this endemic Hawaiian genus at Clermontia
Cyanea koolauensis, haha (Lobelioideae). This Hawaiian endemic lobelioid genus includes shrubs or trees with mostly candelabra-like growth forms.  More images of this endemic Hawaiian genus at Cyanea.
Delissea subcordata (Lobelioideae). This species represents one of the endemic Hawaiian genera of lobelioids.  More images of this endemic Hawaiian genus at Delissea.
Downingia elegans (Lobelioideae). Finley National Wildlife Refuge, OR, Jul 2004.
Hippobroma longiflora. star-of-Bethlehem (Lobelioideae), UH Campus, St. John Courtyard, Honolulu, HI, Jul 2004.
Lobelia cardinalis, cardinal flower (Lobelioideae). This is a typical flower of the lobelioid subfamily showing a 2-lipped, zygomorphic corolla and an inferior ovary. Notice the tubular filament and anther column from which style and stigmatic lobes have emerged. As the style elongates through this column, hairs on the outside of the tightly closed stigmatic lobes brush the pollen that is released to the interior out the top of the anther column where it is available for removal by biotic pollinators. 
Lobelia gaudichaudii (Lobelioideae). This endemic Hawaiian species is found on summit ridges of the Koolau Mts., O'ahu.  More images of Hawaiian species of this genus at Lobelia
Trematolobelia macrostachys, koli'i.  More images of this endemic Hawaiian genus at Trematolobelia.

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