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Leaves basal, rosulate, filiform or linear, glabrous, expanding towards the base to form a sheath. Inflorescence a raceme, panicle or umbellate, erect or twining. Stamens usually 6, rarely 3. Ovary superior, sessile, oblong to globose, 3-celled; Capsule dehiscing loculicidally; Seeds angled, with a fleshy white or orange strophiole.


Asia-Tropical: New Guinea present; Thailand (Thailand present), Australasia: Western Australia (Western Australia present), southern China present
Up to 30 spp., all in Australia (all states, but especially Western Australia); in Malesia: 2 of these spp., one in New Guinea and another throughout Malesia as far as Thailand, Indo-China and southern China.


The fleshy appendage of the seed has been referred to as a caruncle (e.g. Black, 1943), but it appears to be derived from the funicle rather than from the testa and I am, therefore, using the term strophiole as done by Payens (1957).
The term 'cluster' is sometimes used in preference to umbel as in some material the inflorescence appears umbellate but in other material the pedicels arise from a short but distinct axis.


Black 1943 – In: Fl. S. Austr. p 190
Ewart 1930: Fl. Vict. p 288
Bth. 1878 – In: Fl. Austr. p 36
Baker 1876 – In: J. Linn. Soc. Bot. p 334
Krause 1930 – In: E. & P., Nat. Pfl. Fam., ed. 2, 15a. p 285
Hutch. 1959 – In: Fam. Fl. Pl., ed. 2. p 598
Payens 1957 – In: Nova Guinea n.s. p 386
Ridl. 1924 – In: Fl. Mal. Pen. p 328