Evergreen mangrove-like shrub or tree 2-20 m, sometimes with stilt-roots. Leaves coriaceous, narrowly elliptic or sometimes elliptic, 3-12 x 0.6-3.5 cm (incl. petiole), apex tapering narrowly acute to acuminate, base gradually decurrent to narrowly acute, usually glabrous or nearly so, except often sericeous on petiole and at least basal part of midvein below; domatia conspicuous bowl-shaped pits; venation brochidodromous, secondary veins 4-7 pairs; petiole 0-3 mm long, biglandular on petiole or at base of leaf. Inflorescence axillary or terminal raceme or sparse panicle of ± globose flower-heads, up to ca. 15 cm long but usually much less, sometimes with leaves at lower nodes; possibly functionally dioecious, with range of morphological development of male and female organs, often apparently male and bisexual flowers in same head; peduncles densely silvery-sericeous; flower-heads 3-5 mm diam.Flowers 2.5-2.8 mm long (incl. calyx); lower hypanthium 0.7-1.5 x 1.4-1.7 mm in bisexual flowers, densely appressed-pubescent,upper hypanthium cupuliform, 0.8-1.2 x 1.2-1.3 mm (incl. calyx), appressed-pubescent; calyx lobes erect to incurved, 0.3-0.5 mm long; stamens (5-)10, exserted up to 2 mm in male flowers, otherwise variously shorter or aborted; disc pilose; style 0.5-1.7 mm long, often bent or with S-shaped kink, slightly exserted, glabrous. Fruits packed densely into globose to ellipsoid heads of 5-15 x 7-13 mm, only upper part of fruit exposed; fruit puberulous on convex face, glabrous on concave face, 3.7-4 x 4-4.2 mm, flattened, broadly obovate to orbicular in side view, bearing old upper hypanthium until at least maturity, ± 2-winged, wings ca. 0.5-1.5 mm wide.
Africa: Angola (Angola present); Senegal (Senegal present), Atlantic and Pacific coasts of tropical America present, Baja California Norte present, Bermuda present, Guianas present, Southern America: Brazil Southeast (Rio de Janeiro present); Galápagos (Galápagos present), W Africa present, extreme N Peru present
Atlantic and Pacific coasts of tropical America from Baja California Norte (ca. 29° N) and Bermuda (32° 20' N) throughout the West Indies to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (ca. 23° S) and extreme N Peru (ca. 3° 30' S), incl. Galápagos, in W Africa from Senegal (ca. 15° N) to Angola (ca. 7° S); about 6 specimens from the Guianas (GU: 4; SU: 1; FG: 2).