Herbs, perennial, rhizomatous; stems short, fleshy, aerial stems not evident; sap milky. Leaves alternate; stipules persistent, free. Leaf blade ovate to orbiculate, margins entire or pinnately lobed; venation palmate near base of blade, otherwise pinnate. Inflorescences axillary, flowers embedded in long-pedunculate, flat receptacle. Flowers: staminate and pistillate on same plant. Staminate flowers: calyx minute, 2-3-lobed; stamens 1-3, inflexed in bud. Pistillate flowers: calyx tubular, 4-lobed; ovary inferior, embedded in receptacle, 1-locular; style 2-branched. Syncarps disc- or cup-shaped; drupes embedded in enlarged, fleshy, common receptacle. Seeds explosively expelled.
Species ca. 170 (1 in the flora).