Herbs or low shrubs, papillose and often covered with hair-like scales. Leaves opposite or alternate, often fleshy, exstipulate. Flowers small, solitary or in terminal or axillary cymes. Perianth-segments 4 or 5, united in the lower part, coloured inside. Stamens 8-10, in pairs alternating with perianth-segments. Ovary superior, 2-5-celled, with 1 pendulous ovule in each cell. Capsule small, irregularly dehiscent.