Shrubs or trees, 3-10(-15) m tall, semievergreen. Branchlets purplish brown, sparsely lenticellate. Stipules narrowly lanceolate, ca. 1 cm, membranous, caducous, margin serrulate. Petiole 7-10 mm; leaf blade ovate, elliptic, lanceolate, narrowly elliptic, or oblong-elliptic, 7-15(-20) × 2-9 cm, thinly leathery to papery, abaxially glabrous but puberulent along midvein and base of secondary veins particularly when young, adaxially glabrous and shiny, base often slightly oblique and nearly rounded, cuneate, broadly cuneate, subtruncate, or subcordate, margin sharply serrulate, apex narrowly acuminate. Inflorescences globose umbels of abbreviated cymes, 1.5-2.5 cm in diam. at anthesis, to 100- or more flowered; peduncle (2.5-)4-7(-10) cm, puberulent; bracts 4 or 5, at apex of peduncle, membranous, abaxially puberulent, caducous usually before anthesis. Pedicel 5-10 mm, somewhat elongating after anthesis, puberulent. Sepals and petals undifferentiated, 10-14, linear, ca. 1 mm, erect, puberulent, persistent, apex acuminate. Stamens 5-7; filaments ca. 2 mm, exserted from perianth; anthers purplish, ellipsoid, ca. 0.4 mm. Ovary pubescent; style 2-3 mm at anthesis, basally puberulent, apically glabrous, becoming a beak in fruit; stigma subdiscoid, small. Capsule purplish brown, drupaceous, broadly ellipsoid to ovoid, 6-10 mm including persistent style, slightly longitudinally ridged, sparsely puberulent but apically more densely so, base with a ca. 5 mm stipe usually bending when mature, 1-seeded. Seeds blackish brown, ellipsoid, 4-5 mm. Fl. May-Sep, fr. Aug-Oct.