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European ash, Fraxinus excelsiorBell heather, Erica cinera
taxon links [up-->]Asterales [up-->]Solanales [up-->]Dipsacales [up-->]Cornales [up-->]Garryales [up-->]Gentianales [up-->]Aquifoliales [up-->]Lamiales [up-->]Ericales [up-->]Apiales Not Monophyletic[down<--]Core Eudicots Interpreting the tree
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This tree diagram shows the relationships between several groups of organisms.

The root of the current tree connects the organisms featured in this tree to their containing group and the rest of the Tree of Life. The basal branching point in the tree represents the ancestor of the other groups in the tree. This ancestor diversified over time into several descendent subgroups, which are represented as internal nodes and terminal taxa to the right.

example of a tree diagram

You can click on the root to travel down the Tree of Life all the way to the root of all Life, and you can click on the names of descendent subgroups to travel up the Tree of Life all the way to individual species.

For more information on ToL tree formatting, please see Interpreting the Tree or Classification. To learn more about phylogenetic trees, please visit our Phylogenetic Biology pages.

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Relationships after Albach et al. (2001), Olmstead et al. (2000), Savolainen (2000), and Hilu et al. (2003).
Containing group: Core Eudicots


Albach, D. C., P. S. Soltis, and D. E. Soltis. 2001. Patterns of embryological and biochemical evolution in the asterids. Systematic Botany 26:242-262.

Albach, D. C., P. S. Soltis, D. E. Soltis, and R. G. Olmstead. 2001. Phylogenetic analysis of asterids based on sequences of four genes. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden 88:163-212.

Backlund, A. and B. Bremer. 1997. Phylogeny of Asteridae s. str. based on rbcL sequences, with particular reference to Dipsacales. Plant Systematics and Evolution 207:225–254.

Bremer, K., A. Backlund, B. Sennblad, U. Swenson, K. Andreasen, M. Hjertson, J. Lundberg, M. Backlund, and B. Bremer. 2001. A phylogenetic analysis of 100+ genera and 50+ families of euasterids based on morphological and molecular data with notes on possible higher level morphological synapomorphies. Plant Systematics and Evolution 229:137-169.

Bremer, B., K. Bremer, N. Heidari, P. Erixon, R. G. Olmstead, A. A. Anderberg, M. K?llersj?, and E. Barkhordarian. 2002. Phylogenetics of asterids based on 3 coding and 3 non-coding chloroplast DNA markers and the utility of non-coding DNA at higher taxonomic levels. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 24:274-301.

Bremer, K., E. Friis, and B. Bremer. 2004. Molecular phylogenetic dating of asterid flowering plants shows early Cretaceous diversification. Systematic Biology 53(3):496-505.

Kenneth M. Cameron, K. M. 2002. On the Phylogenetic Position of the New Caledonian Endemic Families Paracryphiaceae, Oncothecaceae, and Strasburgeriaceae: A Comparison of Molecules and Morphology. The Botanical Review 68(4):428?443.

Hibsch-Jetter, C., D. E. Soltis, and T. D. McFarlane. 1997. Phylogenetic analysis of Eremosyne pectinata (Saxifragaceae s.l.) based on rbcL sequence data. Plant Systematics and Evolution 204:225-232.

Hilu, K. W., T. Borsch, K. M?ller, D. E. Soltis, P. S. Soltis, V. Savolainen, M. W. Chase, M. P. Powell, L. A. Alice, R. Evans, H. Sauquet, C. Neinhuis, T. A. B. Slotta, J. G. Rohwer, C. S. Campbell, and L. W. Chatrou. 2003. Angiosperm phylogeny based on matK sequence information. American Journal of Botany 90(12):1758-1776.

Judd, W. S. and R. G. Olmstead. 2004. A survey of tricolpate (eudicot) phylogenetic relationships. American Journal of Botany 91:1627-1644.

K?rehed J. 2001. Multiple origin of the tropical forest tree family Icacinaceae. American Journal of Botany 88:2259-2259.

Olmstead, R. G., K.-J. Kim, R. K. Jansen, and S. J. Wagstaff. 2000. The phylogeny of the Asteridae sensu lato based on chloroplast ndhF gene sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 16:96-112.

Savolainen, V., M. F. Fay, D. C. Albach, A. Backlund, M. van der Bank, K. M. Cameron, S. A. Johnson, M. D. Lled?, J.-C. Pintaud, M. Powell, M. C. Sheahan, D. E. Soltis, P. S. Soltis, P. Weston, W. M. Whitten, K. J. Wurdack, and M. W. Chase. 2000. Phylogeny of the eudicots: a nearly complete familial analysis based on rbcl gene sequences. Kew Bulletin 55:257-309.

Soltis, D. E., P. S. Soltis, M. W. Chase, M. E. Mort, D. C. Albach, M. Zanis, V. Savolainen, W. H. Hahn, S. B. Hoot, M. F. Fay, M. Axtell, S. M. Swensen, L. M. Prince, W. J. Kress, K. C. Nixon, and J. S. Farris. 2000. Angiosperm phylogeny inferred from 18S rDNA, rbcL, and atpB sequences. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 133:381-461.

Title Illustrations
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
Click on an image to view larger version & data in a new window
European ash, Fraxinus excelsior
Scientific Name Fraxinus excelsior
Location Allschwil, Basel, Switzerland.
Comments European ash (Lamiales, Oleaceae)
Acknowledgements courtesy Botanical Image Database
Copyright © 2001 University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland
Bell heather, Erica cinera
Scientific Name Erica cinera
Comments Bell heather (Ericales, Ericaceae)
Copyright © Kurt Stüber
Scientific Name Lactuca sp.
Location Vladivostok city, Primorsky Territory (Russian Federation)
Specimen Condition Live Specimen
Source Lactuca sp.
Source Collection CalPhotos
Copyright © 1999
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Citing this page:

Tree of Life Web Project. 2002. Asterids. Version 01 January 2002 (temporary). http://tolweb.org/Asterids/20704/2002.01.01 in The Tree of Life Web Project, http://tolweb.org/

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This page is a Tree of Life Branch Page.

Each ToL branch page provides a synopsis of the characteristics of a group of organisms representing a branch of the Tree of Life. The major distinction between a branch and a leaf of the Tree of Life is that each branch can be further subdivided into descendent branches, that is, subgroups representing distinct genetic lineages.

For a more detailed explanation of the different ToL page types, have a look at the Structure of the Tree of Life page.

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