The family Campanulaceae (also bellflower family), of the order Asterales, contains nearly 2400 species in 84 genera of herbaceous plants, shrubs, and rarely small trees, often with milky non-toxic sap. Among them are the familiar garden plants Campanula (bellflower), Lobelia, and Platycodon (balloonflower). This family is almost cosmopolitan but concentrated in the Northern Hemisphere. However in the Southern Hemisphere, South Africa is remarkably rich in members of this family. These species are absent in the Sahara, Antarctica, and northern Greenland. Most current classifications include the segregate family Lobeliaceae in Campanulaceae as subfamily Lobelioideae.
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