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Bauhinia (family Leguminosae, subfamily Caesalpinoideae) A genus of plants, most of which are woody climbers with curiously flattened, or corrugated, stems. A few are small trees. The flowers are very showy. The leaves are simple, more or less split into 2 lobes, with many main veins. Because of the bilobed leaves, the genus is named in honour of the Bauhin brothers, Jean and Gaspard. There are 250 species of Bauhinia, distributed through the tropics and subtropics.