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Erect, glabrous or variously hairy herbs; Leaves basal and/or cauline, more or less linear or reduced to scales, alternate, often amplexicaul at the base. Inflorescence of terminal umbels surrounded by small scarious bracts and outer larger, sometimes leaf-like bracts. Ovary superior, sessile, deeply 3-lobed, 3-celled; Fruit consisting of (1-)3 indehiscent nutlets; Seeds subglobose.


Asia-Tropical, Australasia, S. Papua New Guinea present
In Australia (all states) 6 spp., of which one in Malesia: S. Papua New Guinea.


The terms 'stem' and 'leaves' give some difficulty as the aerial shoot might be better regarded as an inflorescence often bearing leaf-like bracts rather than as a vegetative shoot with leaves.


Hutch. - in Fam. Fl. Pl., ed. 2. 1959: 602
Bth. - in Fl. Austr. 1878: 50
Krause - in E. & P., Nat. Pfl. Fam., ed. 2, 15a. 1930: 287
Black - in Fl. S. Austr. 1943: 192
Baker - in J. Linn. Soc. Bot. 1876: 361
Bailey - in Queensl. Fl. 1902: 1636
Ewart, Fl. Vict. 1930: 287