Erect perennial or annual herbs or shrubs of wet places. Leaves alternate or opposite, mostly entire. Flowers actinomorphic, borne singly or clustered, often axillary or arranged in inflorescence, epigynous without a hypanthium. Sepals 3-7, persistent in fruit. Petals as many as sepals and conspicuous, or absent, entire, yellow or white. Stamens as many or twice as many as sepals. Stigma entire, capitate. Ovary 4-5-locular. Fruit an obovoid to shortly cylindrical capsule, irregularly dehiscing. Seeds numerous, small, rounded or elongate, free or embedded in woody endocarp.