Trees; branches terete, striate. Leaves alternate, sessile, lanceolate, acuminate, base cuneate; stipules absent. Flowers bisexual or unisexual (dioecious), in fascicles on old wood or on branches, often subtended by spirally arranged bracts. Calyx a single whorl of 5 free, quincuncial sepals. Corolla broadly tubular; tube shorter than the 5 broadly ovate lobes. Stamens +/- 20 in a single whorl, +/- 3 opposite each corolla lobe and arising at top of corolla tube; filaments well-developed, glabrous; anthers extrorse, glabrous, absent in female flowers; staminodes 5 or more, much shorter than corolla lobes, usually petaloid, fimbriate, glabrous, often inflexed and covering ovary. Disc absent. Ovary many-locular; placentation axile; style usually included. Fruit usually depressed-globose; several- to many-seeded; outer pericarp often woody. Seeds strongly laterally compressed; testa smooth, shining; scar adaxial, nearly full-length, very narrow; embryo with thin foliaceous cotyledons and exserted radicle; endosperm copious.
Species +/- 6, W and WC trop. Africa; sthn trop. Afr. 1: Omphalocarpum mayumbense Greves, Angola (Cabinda).

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith