Description from Flora of China
Herbs perennial, 1-2 m tall. Stem often tinged red, stout, branched. Petiole 2-3 cm, annexed hairy or nearly glabrous; leaf blade purple with lighter bands along main veins, broadly ovate to suborbicular, 2-6 cm in diam., annexed hairy, base truncate, margin entire, apex retuse or 2-lobed. Complex thyrsoid structures terminal or axillary, composed of many spikes. Bracts and bracteoles persistent, greenish white or yellowish white, ovate, 1-1.5 mm, glabrous. Flowers small, unisexual on different plants. Tepals greenish white or yellowish white, oblong, ca. 1 mm. Ovary globose, compressed; style very short.
Widely cultivated. Guangdong, Guangxi, Hainan, Jiangsu, Shanghai, Yunnan [native to South America (Brazil)].