or perennial herbs or small shrubs, often succulent. Leaves simple, alternate
or opposite, entire or subentire, fleshy or scale-like. Stipules if present
membranous. Flowers solitary or in cymes, usually bisexual, hypogynous,
sometimes epigynous. Calyx 4-8 lobed tubular. Petals commonly numerous, mostly
linear, sometimes connate at the base. Stamens 4-5 or 8-10 or numerous, distinct
or basally connate into groups. Carpels 2-5 or more, united to form a compound
ovary, ovary superior, subinferior or inferior. Placentation axil, parietal or
basal with many ovules in each locule. Fruit a capsule, rarely berry or nut.