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Herbs, shrubs or lianas; stems arcuate. Leaves alternate, membranous, petiolate. Inflorescence of terminal and/or axillary cymes, thyrses or panicles, with spike-like branches bearing few-flowered cymules; bracts 3, stramineous, persistent, much shorter than perianth of lowest flower. Flowers bisexual or functionally unisexual, white or greenish; tepals 5, free, scarious, prominently veined, apiculate; stamens 5, filaments united below into a membranous cup, anthers 4-locular, staminodia absent; ovary at top with upturned rim, stigmas 2(-3). Fruit a dry, 1-seeded, circumscissile capsule; seed with prominent or inconspicuous aril.


Guianas present, tropical and subtropical regions of the New World present
Species 2, in tropical and subtropical regions of the New World, including the Guianas.