Herbs, perennial; roots woody. Stems ascending to erect, glabrous or pubescent to pilose or tomentose. Leaves deciduous, mostly cauline, alternate, petiolate or sessile; ocrea persistent or deciduous, chartaceous; blade narrowly lanceolate to ovate, margins entire, sometimes irregularly undulate. Inflorescences terminal, subterminal, or axillary, racemelike or paniclelike; peduncle present or essentially absent. Pedicels present. Flowers bisexual, 1-5 per ocreate fascicle, base stipelike or not; perianth nonaccrescent, creamy or greenish to yellowish white or pink, rotate, glabrous; tepals 5, connate ca. 4 their length, petaloid, slightly to distinctly dimorphic, outer 2 smaller than inner 3; stamens 8; filaments distinct, free or adnate to perianth tube, glabrous; anthers yellow to pink or reddish purple, ovate to elliptic; styles 3, erect or spreading, distinct or connate proximally; stigmas capitate. Achenes includedor exserted, yellowish or dark brown, unwinged, 3-gonous, glabrous. Seeds: embryo usually curved. x = 8, 10, 11.