Previously in Family Sterculiaceae they are now in subfamily Sterculioideae of Family Malvaceae.
There are around 16 species all native to Asia.

They are shrubs to large deciduous trees.
The bark can be green, brown or dark blackish-brown.
Leaves may be simple but are commonly 3 to 5 palmately lobed or palmatisect.
Leaves are on petioles from 4 to 45 cm long.

The blades, from 7 to 30 cm long by 5 to 40 cm wide, are roughly circular.
The lobes can be from 2 to 14 cm long.
The base can be rounded, wedge-shaped or shallowly to deeply heart-shaped.
The tips of the lobes are rounded or have long or short points.
The lower surface can be smooth to densely hairy.
The green leaves turn yellow before they fall.

Inflorescences are branched terminal or axillary clusters of flowers.
Flowers can appear before, or with the leaves.
Flowers can be all unisexual or a tree can have unisexual and bisexual flowers.
There are no petals with the flower colour being due to the calyx.
Flower parts are typically in 5’s although this can vary slightly.

The calyx can be cylindrical, funnel or bell-shaped and up to 3 cm long.
The (4) 5 lobes can be shorter or longer than the tube.
The lobes may curve outwards.
There may be dense, reddish-brown stellate hairs.
The calyx can be cream, greenish, white, purple or reddish-orange.

There is an androgynophore (a stalk holding the reproductive parts).
Male flowers have 10 to 20 stamens in a tight head-like cluster.
The carpels are present but not developed.

Female flowers have 5 carpels and 5 locules in the ovary.
There are 2 to many ovules in each locule.
The styles are fused at the base and there are as many stigmas as locules.
The undeveloped anthers are at the base.

Fruit are follicles that split open long before they are mature.
They split into leaf-like sections with the seeds attached to the edges.