Description from Flora of China
Trees or shrubs, monoecious or dioecious, hairs simple, often absent. Leaves alternate, usually distichous; stipules small, caducous; petiole short; leaf blade simple, margin entire, venation pinnate. Inflorescences axillary, 1-flowered; pedicels often slender. Male flowers: sepals (4 or)5 or 6, free, in 2 series, imbricate, oblong-elliptic, midrib elevated abaxially, apex caudate-acuminate; petals absent; disk segments (4 or)5 or 6, shorter than sepals, ligulate or oblong, entire; stamens 3(or 4); filaments connate into a terete column; anthers 2-locular, longitudinally dehiscent, connectives subulate-acuminate at apex. Female flowers: sepals and disk segments 5 or 6; ovary 3-locular; ovules 2 per locule; styles 3, apex usually not lobed, often erect. Fruit a capsule, subglobose, septicidally and loculicidally dehiscent into 3 2-valved cocci when mature. Seeds 3-angled.
Phyllanthodendron is a very easily identifiable segregate that nests within Phyllanthus, retained here for convenience. It can be easily distinguished by the distinctly caudate-acuminate sepals, linear to spatulate disk glands, and extended anther connectives.
About 16 species: Peninsular Malaysia to China; ten species (nine endemic) in China.
(Authors: Li Bingtao (李秉滔 Li Ping-tao); Michael G. Gilbert)