Distribution of Moringaceae:
It is commonly called Moringa family. It includes single genus Moringa by Pax (1936) and Puri (1942) with 10 species, distributed in Tropics of the Old World. It is called Horse raddish and in Hindi Sajina. It is cultivated in all parts of Bengal, Rajasthan etc. for fruits and flowers, which are used as vegetables.
Economic Importance of Moringaceae:
The fruits and flowers of Moringa oleifera are used as vegetables. Its roots are a source of an edible condiment.
The oil obtained from seeds of Moringa is nondrying and used in lubrication of fine machinery.
Affinities of Moringaceae:
The systematic position of this family is controversial. Many taxonomists – Bessey, Wettstein and Core included it in Rhoeadales, being allied to Capparidaceae. The true systematic position as it appears should be under Parietals.
The family Moringaceae in the zygomorphy of flowers, perigyny and parietal placentation appears to be allied to Violaceae and Tovariaceae so its consequent taxonomic position is to be under Parietales, rather than Rhoeadales.
The stipitate ovary (gynophore?) and perigyny form a connecting link with Rhoeadales and Rosales. According to Puri (1942) the hypanthium is partly receptacular and partly appendicular – the basal and posterior parts are receptacular, the rim and anterior portion represent the basal parts of calyx.
According to Erdtman, the pollen grains similar to those of Moringa occur in several families, such as Capparidaceae and Resedaceae but certainly there is no relationship with the latter family (i.e., Resedaceae).