Description from Flora of China
Subshrubs or shrubs, rhizomatous. Stems simple. Leaves alternate or 4-8-fascicled, exstipulate; leaf blade simple. Inflorescence often terminal, a thyrse or corymbose cyme. Sterile flowers few, large; sepals 2 or 3, free or sometimes basally slightly connate, petaloid. Fertile flowers numerous, small. Calyx tube adnate to ovary, forming a hypanthium; teeth small, valvate in bud. Petals (4 or)5, imbricate in bud. Stamens very numerous, multiseriate; filaments filiform; anthers obcordate, 2-loculed, dehiscing longitudinally, apex truncate; connective broadly obtriangular. Ovary subinferior, incompletely 2- or 3-loculed. Styles 2-4; stigmas small, subcapitate. Fruit a capsule, subinferior, dehiscing apically, apex with persistent calyx teeth and styles. Seeds numerous, small, compressed, winged at both ends; seed coat reticulate; embryo small, surrounded by fleshy endosperm.
About four species: mainly in subtropical E Asia; two species (one endemic) in China.
(Authors: Wei Zhaofen (Wei Chao-fen); Bruce Bartholomew)