Small to medium-sized terrestrial herbs with woody bases. Roots elongate, fibrous, aerial then branched in soil, sometimes bearing root-nodules; rhizome scaly or absent. Shoots branched or unbranched, erect, leafy. Leaves spirally arranged, leathery, plicate, spreading or suberect, green. Inflorescences terminal, racemose, few to many flowered; bracts persistent. Flowers almost regular but usually slightly zygomorphic, concolorous; pedicel obscure to short, twisted or not, with a torus; ovary 3-locular. Sepals spreading, entire, cuspidate, with thickened midribs. Petals free, cuspidate; lip similar to petals or slightly broader. Column short, straight to curved, style fused to base of filaments only; anthers 2 or 3, with 2 equal or unequal thecae each 2-locular; pollen powdery, not forming pollinia; staminode present or absent; style free in upper part, cylindric, fleshy; stigma terminal, rounded to 2- or 3-lobed. Fruit capsular or berrylike, disintegrating into 3 valves. Seeds ovoid to ellipsoidal with a terminal appendage.
Two genera and ca. 17 species: confined to tropical Asia from China across to the Solomon Islands and the Philippines; two genera and four species (one endemic) in China.