A small family of annual and perennial dicotyledonous (see dicotyledon) herbs in which the leaves are simple and fleshy, the lower ones opposite the upper ones alternate, with fused pairs of membranaceous stipules. The flowers are in unisexual clusters of 1–3, the males globose, the females tubular. The ovary is a single carpel, developing into a nut-like drupe with a fleshy endosperm, which is dispersed by ants. The family comprises 1 genus, with 3 species, occurring from the Mediterranean region to China, and Japan.
Subjects: Plant Sciences and Forestry.