Small trees. Leaves alternate, even-pinnately compound, distal leaflet rudimentary or wanting; leaflets 2 or 4, opposite; rachis winged or nearly cylindric; stipules wanting. Inflorescence of distal or axillary panicles or racemes. Flowers 4- or 5-merous, actinomorphic, unisexual (the plants dioecious or monoecious); sepals imbricate, connate at base, shorter or as long as the petals; corolla of distinct petals with imbricate aestivation, inserted on the base of an extrastaminal nectary disc, the petals erect or reflexed, elliptic to obovate, without appendages, or with two distinct, basal, minute appendages; nectary disc prominent, annular or lobed; stamens 8, filaments of equal or unequal length, longer than the petals, glabrous, the anthers dorsifixed, elliptic or ovate, retuse at apex; ovary 2-carpellate, unilocular, each carpel with a single campylotropous or apotropous ovule, the stigma lobed to subcapitate, sessile. Fruits baccate, indehiscent, ellipsoid, ovoid, or globose, with leathery mesocarp. Seed 1(-2), with a fleshy, edible sarcotesta. Embryo lomatorrhizal with straight erect cotyledons of similar size, or notorrhizal with cotyledons diagonally superimposed, the radicle punctiform or elongated.
Melicoccus in Civ. Nat. Hist. Jamaica. 210. 1756 sec. S. MOTA DE OLIVEIRA, 2012
- Type: Matayba bijugatus