Description from Flora of China
Trees, shrubs, or woody climbers. Leaves alternate, imparipinnate; stipules often small and early caducous; leaflets alternate, rarely opposite, estipellate. Inflorescences terminal or axillary, racemes or panicles, usually numerous flowered; bracts and bracteoles usually small, caducous, rarely persistent. Flowers small. Calyx campanulate, 5-toothed; teeth unequal, rarely subequal, lowest tooth usually largest, upper pair usually wider than others and partially connate. Corolla white, pale green, or rarely purple; petals clawed; standard ovate, oblong, or orbicular; wings with base cuneate, truncate, or sagittate; keel often boat-shaped, ± united above. Stamens 9 or 10, monadelphous, usually united in an open sheath, or diadelphous and then in 2 bundles of 5 each (5+5), or 9 united and 1 free (9+1); anthers erect, small, dehiscent by short apical slits. Ovary stipitate, few ovuled; style usually incurved, long or short; stigma terminal, small. Fruit an indehiscent legume, of 4 types: (a) strongly flattened, translucent, raised over seeds ("samaroid"); (b) thicker, ± leathery, often with lenticels; (c) thick, ± woody; (b+c) when more than 1 seed develops, legume lomentaceous. Seeds reniform, compressed, those of legume types b, c, and b+c usually not visible from outside; radicle inflexed.
Due to insufficient data, Dalbergia tonkinensis (species no. 29) could not be included in the key.
Dalbergia esquirolii H. Léveillé (Fl. Kouy-Tchéou, 230. 1914-1915), described from Guizhou, could not be treated here because no material was seen by the present authors.
Between 100 and 120 species: tropical and subtropical regions of North and South America, Africa, and Asia; 29 species (14 endemic, one introduced) in China.