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Succulent, erect or prostrate, annual or perennial herbs; branches rarely rooting. Leaves fleshy, often more or less terete; exstipulate; petioles sheathing, often connate at base. Inflorescences axillary, of one or more sessile or pedicellate flowers, minutely 2-bracteate at base of pedicel. Flowers perigynous; sessile or pedicellate; perianth-segments 5, imbricate, inside coloured, outside green, appendage dorsal, near apex, long-apiculate; petals absent; stamens either 5, free, or numerous and inserted on perianth-tube, filaments filiform, glabrous; ovary 2-5-locular, ovules numerous, placentation axile, styles (2-)3-5. Fruit a membranous, circumscissile capsule, (2-)3-5-locular, operculum conical, septa incomplete in ripe fruits; seeds numerous in each locule, cochleate to reniform, completely covered by a thin aril, smooth or rough to papillose.


Guianas present, Pantropical present
Approximately 12, often halophytic, species, occurring pantropically and subtropically; 1 species in the Guianas.