Abstract: Leaf anatomy of eight species of Indigofera of the tribe Galegeae was studied from Eastern Nigeria with the aid of light microscope. This is with a view of establishing taxonomic relationships among the species. Results from the investigation show that variation in leaf anatomical attributes were so obvious that they could be added to other taxanomic information and used in an attempt to determine the taxanomic importance of leaf anatomy. Taxonomically significant characters among the taxa investigated include the variation in shape of the epidermal cells-mostly rectangular and sinuous in I. pulchra, I. senegelensis and I. stenophylla while it varies from pentagonal in I. paniculata, I. prieureana and I. terminalis through hexagonal in I. hirusta and I. ticntoria. Other anatomical characters of the leaf epidermis that exhibit variation include number of palisade layer: 1-2 layers in I. pulchra, I. senegalensis and I. stenophylla to 4-5 layers in I. prieureana and I. tintoria, nature of epidermal cells: tubular in I. hirsuta, I. prieureana and I. senegelensis straight in I. paniculata and I. tinctoria while it is wavy in I. stenophylla and I. terminalis. Type of crystal present in the leaf epidermis is also variable among the taxa: raphides in I. paniculata and I. tinctoria but tanninferous bags in I. senegelensis. The biosystematic implications of these findings have been discussed in the light of current literature.
C.U. Nwachukwu and F.N. Mbagwu , 2007. Leaf Anatomy of Eight Species of Indigofera L.. Agricultural Journal, 2: 149-154.