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Tamaricaceae A family of dicotyledonous (see DICOTYLEDON) trees and shrubs with minute, scale- or needle-like leaves, resembling those of conifers. The tiny, regular flowers, which are tetra- or pentamerous, are normally grouped in dense spikes or racemes. The stamens are usually free, and the ovary is 1-celled and superior, ripening to a capsule. Several Tamarix species (tamarisks), particularly T. gallica, are frequently planted for ornament or shelter, or are naturalized, on the coasts of north-western Europe and elsewhere, as they survive salt spray and strong winds very well. There are 5 genera and 87 species, occurring from south-western Europe to central Asia, and southern Africa.