herbs rising from sympodial rhizomes, acaulescent or with slender, unbranched
aerial stem, glabrous or hairy. Leaves distichous, petioles long, sheaths basal, banana-like leaves rolled-up
in buds, midrib prominent. Inflorescence few-flowered monochasial cyme,
terminal, bracts large, showy, distichous, keeled or boat-shaped, each
subtending a cyme. Flowers bisexual, epigynous, irregular. Tepals 6, 2-cycled,
petaloid, median of outer cycle distinct, remaining 5 connate into 5-toothed, boat-shaped
structures. Stamens 6, 5 functional, opening longitudinally, 6th a small staminode, adnate to the odd tepal.
Carpels 3, united, ovary 3-celled, inferior, style slender, stigma capitate or
3-lobed, papillate, ovule solitary per locule. Fruit a schizocarp.