Trees, 10-30 m tall, monoecious. Bark greyish brown or dark brown. Branchlets 1-1.5 mm in diameter, jointed; internodes 6-8 mm long with 6-8 prominent ridges; nodal leaf-sheaths with 6-(7)- 8 teeth, pale green, united at base into a short tube, free part 0.5-1.0 x 0.3-0.5 mm, glabrous but margins shortly ciliate. Male inflorescence 15-40 mm long, 2-4 mm in diameter, bracts arranged in 10-25 whorls and each whorl having 6-7 bracts with one flower in each bract; bracteoles membranous, ovate, acute, 0.5-1.0 x 0.2 mm, tepals 2, membranous, 0.5-0.8 x 0.5 mm. Filaments exserted, 2.0-2.5 mm long; anthers 2-celled, 1-1.5 mm long, reddish-brown. Female inflorescence in scattered or clustered ovoid-subglobose heads, 4-8 mm long, stalk 2-12 mm long, bracts ± similar to those of male inflorescence; perianth 0, pistil bicarpellary, ovary unilocular with 1-2 acending ovules; stigmas 2-3 mm long, exserted, red. Infructescence globose-oblong, 15-30 x 12-15 mm; 8-9 whorls of paired infructescence valves; 7-8 valves in each whorl, alternating with the valves located in the next whorl, obovate-oblanceolate, acute. Samaras 4-8 mm long, yellowish brown.
Fl. Per.: December-March.
Type: Rumph., Herb. Amb. 3(4), t. 57.1743 (Wilmot-Dear, l.c., 1985).
Distribution: Native to Australia, Polynesia and Malaysia. Introduced in Pakistan, India, Srilanka, Tropical Africa, Mascarene Isles, Europe. N, and S. America.
Cultivated as a hedge plant or as an ornamental tree in gardens, road side and also for soil stabilization.