Habit and leaf form. Herbs; evergreen; with coloured juice; resinous, or not resinous. Annual, or perennial. Mesophytic. Heterophyllous, or not heterophyllous. Leaves medium-sized to large; alternate; spiral, or distichous; leathery, or ‘herbaceous’; petiolate; non-sheathing; simple; epulvinate. Leaf blades entire; ovate, or triangular; pinnately veined, or palmately veined; cross-venulate; cordate to rounded at the base. Leaves with stipules (stipules intra-petiolar, small). Stipules intrapetiolar; free of one another, or concrescent; ochreate, or not ochreate; caducous, or persistent. Leaf blade margins crenate, or dentate. Leaves without a persistent basal meristem. Leaf anatomy. Hydathodes present, or absent. Hairs present. Stem anatomy. Secondary thickening developing from a conventional cambial ring.
Reproductive type, pollination. Fertile flowers functionally male and functionally female. Unisexual flowers present. Plants monoecious. Male flowers with pistillodes. Anemophilous, or entomophilous.
Inflorescence and flower features. Flowers aggregated in ‘inflorescences’; in cymes. The terminal inflorescence unit cymose. Inflorescences axillary; inflorescence a bisexual capitate cyme; with involucral bracts; pseudanthial, or not pseudanthial. Flowers pedicellate, or sessile; bracteate; small (reduced); regular; cyclic; not enclosed in the succulent receptacle. Perianth sepaline; 4 (in male flowers), or 4–6 (in female flowers); 1 -whorled; more or less joined. Calyx present; 4 (in male flowers), or 4–6 (in female flowers); polysepalous, or gamosepalous; blunt-lobed; imbricate, or valvate; campanulate; regular; persistent. Corolla absent. Fertile stamens present, or absent (female flowers). Androecium 4. Androecial members free of the perianth; free of one another. Androecium exclusively of fertile stamens. Stamens 4; isomerous with the perianth; oppositisepalous; erect in bud. Anthers dehiscing via longitudinal slits; extrorse, or introrse; tetrasporangiate. Fertile gynoecium present, or absent (male flowers). Gynoecium in female flowers 2(–3) carpelled. The pistil 1 celled. Carpels reduced in number relative to the perianth. Gynoecium syncarpous; synovarious to synstylovarious; superior to partly inferior. Ovary unilocular; 1 locular; often stipitate. Gynoecium stylate. Styles 2; partially joined; forked (branches unequal); lateral; persistent. Stigmas 2. Placentation apical, or basal. Ovules in the single cavity 1; pendulous, or ascending; anatropous to campylotropous, or hemianatropous.
Fruit and seed features. Fruit fleshy, or non-fleshy; indehiscent; achene-like; enclosed in the fleshy receptacle, or without fleshy investment. Gynoecia of adjoining flowers combining to form a multiple fruit, or not forming a multiple fruit. The multiple fruits coalescing, or not coalescing. Dispersal unit the seed, or the fruit, or the inflorescence. Fruit 1 seeded. Seeds endospermic, or non-endospermic. Endosperm oily, or not oily. Cotyledons 1, or 2. Embryo curved.
Etymology. Origin of generic name unknown.