Shrubs or treelets. Leaves shortly petioled, chartaceous, nerves close, parallel, ± straight, curving upward near the margin, forming an inconspicuous marginal nerve and a conspicuous, somewhat wavy nerve parallel to the margin at some distance, veinlets reticulate, joining in irregular secondary nerves parallel to the primary ones. Stipules small, intrapetiolarly united, caducous. Inflorescences lateral and/or terminal thyrses with ± reduced branches; Flowers with a short, columnar, 5-ribbed gynophore, enlarging and sometimes turning subglobular in fruit. Sepals 5, tinged pinkish, accrescent. Petals 5, yellow, creamy or white. Stamens 10 in 1 whorl; Ovaries 5, obovoid; Fruits 1-2(-5), yellowish green, turning dark purple or blue-black when ripe.
Africa, S. of the Sahara: present Asia-Temperate:, Hainan (Hainan present) Asia-Tropical: Ceylon: present E. Thailand: present Madagascar: present SW. Peninsular India: present W. Malesia: present
The majority of the species is found in Africa, S. of the Sahara, and in Madagascar. One sp. in SW. Peninsular India, Ceylon, E. Thailand, Indo-China, Hainan, and W. Malesia.
Gomphia, Gen. Pl., ed. 8: 291. 1789