This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
Herbs, shrubs, or trees. Leaves usually alternate sometimes digitate; stipules usually present, and occasionally spinescent. Sepals 4, rarely more. Petals 4, very seldom more, rarely none. Stamens often many, and when few never tetradynamous. Ovary 1-celled, with several placentas, often on a long stalk. Seeds numerous. Albumen none or very thin. A large order, inhabiting the warmer and tropical regions of both hemispheres.