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Trees, shrubs or herbs. Leaves paripinnate, compound, stipulate. Foliar glands often present. Flowers yellow, bisexual in simple racemes or panicles. Sepals 5, imbricate in bud. Petals 5, free. Stamens 10, fertile stamens usually 7, anthers opening by pores or slit. Fruits a pod, oblong, indehiscent or dehiscent.

Key to the species

Serial Key Reference
1a. Trees 2
1b. Sub-shrubs to shrubs 3
2a. Leaflets 5-10 pairs; lower surface pilose, upper surface glabrous; fruit 15-25 cm long S. siamea
2b. Leaflets 15-20 pairs; yellowish brown pubescent on both surfaces; fruit not more than 15 cm long S. timoriensis
3a. Leaf rachis without any gland S. alata
3b. Leaf rachis furnished with glands 4
4a. Leaf with one large gland near base of common petiole 5
4b. Leaf with one or more glands on the main rachis, between the bases of leaflets 7
5a. All parts densely hirsute. Strongly foetid S. hirsuta
5b. All parts not densely hirsute, glabrous to pubescent 6
6a. Leaflets 3-5-jugate; ovate-oblong; pod flattened, impressed between seeds S. occidentalis
6b. Leaflets 6-12 jugate, oblong-lanceolate; pods slighty turgid, not impressed between seeds S. sophera
7a. Leaflets glaucescent beneath, foetid; leaf rachis with 2 glands, one between each of the lower pair of leaflets S. tora
7b. Leaflets green beneath, not foetid; leaf rachis with only one gland between the lowest pair of leaflets S. obtusifolia