Description from Flora of China
Trees or shrubs, deciduous or semi-evergreen, dioecious or monoecious. Branchlets never spinose, never corky or winged. Stipules 2, free, caducous, leaving a short transverse scar on each side of the leaf base. Leaves alternate, distichous or in several ranks; papery to leathery, margin serrate or entire. Flowers appearing at same time as leaves, unisexual. Male inflorescences cymes. Female inflorescences 1-flowered. Male flowers: perianth 4- or 5-parted, tepals imbricate. Ovary absent or inconspicuous and hair-shaped. Stamens equal in number to tepals; filaments erect or apically incurved; anthers oblong. Female flowers: perianth 4- or 5-parted, tepals narrow and ± imbricate. Drupes ovoid to ± globose; exocarp ± fleshy; endocarp bony. Seed with thin endosperm or not; embryo involute; cotyledons narrow.
About five species: tropical and subtropical areas of E Asia, Madagascar, Mexico, and Pacific Islands; two species in China.