undershrubs or shrubs with perennial rootstocks, stems very short or
indistinct. Leaves leathery-fleshy, sessile, forming dense clusters on
rootstock, margin usually spiny, apex tipped with spine. Flowering stems tall,
stout, branched or simple. Inflorescence a large panicle, terminal, erect.
Flowers solitary or in fascicles, perianth-tube short, lobes narrow, subequal,
stamens inserted at throat or in perianth-tube, filaments filiform, anther
versatile. Ovary inferior, trilocular, ovules many, style slender, stigma
3-lobed. Fruit a loculicidal capsule, globose, 3-valved. Seeds numerous, black,