Not a large family, widely distributed in warm and tropical regions; ours are herbs or shrubs, with opposite or alternate, compound leaves, with stipules and toothless leaflets; flowers complete, usually with five sepals and five petals, and usually twice the number of stamens, with swinging anthers, alternate stamens sometimes longer, filaments often with a small scale near the middle; ovary superior, usually surrounded at the base by a disk; style one, with a five- to ten-lobed stigma; fruit dry.

There are several kinds of Covillea.