Herbs. Leaves simple or compound, alternate, rarely opposite, usually exstipulate. Inflorescence cymose or racemose, rarely flowers solitary. Flowers 4-5-merous; bisexual or occasionally unisexual. Calyx free or adnate to the ovary, imbricate or valvate. Petals free, sometimes absent. Stamens twice or equal to the number of sepals. Carpels 2(-4), free or united at the base; ovary 1-2-locular; superior, inferior or semi-inferior; placentation axile; styles 2, or as many as the carpels. Fruit a capsule; seeds many.
Hydrangeaceae,Parnassiaceae.Philadelphiaceae and Grossulariaceae were previously often included in Saxifragaceae but are now generally placed as independent families (as in this Flora) because of habit, vegetative and floral differences.