In eukaryotes, protein deacetylation is carried out by two well-conserved histone deacetylase (HDAC) families: RPD3/HDA1 and SIR2. Intriguingly, model plants such as Arabidopsis express an additional plant-specific HDAC family, termed type-2 HDACs (HD2s). Transcriptomic analyses from more than 1300 green plants generated by the 1000 plants (1KP) consortium showed that HD2s appeared early in green plant evolution, the first members being detected in several streptophyte green alga. The HD2 family has expanded via several rounds of successive duplication; members are expressed in all major green plant clades. Interestingly, angiosperm species express new HD2 genes devoid of a zinc-finger domain, one of the main structural features of HD2s. These variants may have been associated with the origin and/or the biology of the ovule/seed.