Trees, shrubs or herbs with various glandular secretions. Leaves simple, almost always entire, usually opposite or rarely alternate or whorled, exstipulate. Inflorescence various. Flowers hermaphrodite, actinomorphic. Sepals (2-)4-5(-6), imbricate. Petals 4-5(-10), free, contorted in bud. Stamens indefinite, free or in 4-5(-10), free or variously united fascicles, sometimes with the antesepalous fascicles sterile. Ovary superior, 1-12-locular, with axile or parietal placentation; ovules numerous to solitary; styles 1-6 or absent, stigmas 1-12, Fruit a capsule, berry or drupe. Seeds numerous to solitary, without endosperm.
A family of about 40 genera and about 1000 species, confined to the tropics apart from Triadenum Rafin. (E. Asia and N.E. America) and Hypericum L., the largest genus and the only one recorded from West Pakistan. The subfamily Hypericoideae is sometimes treated as a separate family, Hypericaceae.
Acknowledgements: We are grateful to the United States Department of Agriculture for financing this research under P.L. 480 and to Miss V. Goaman for the illustrations.