Herbs or occasionally shrubs, trees or aquatic plants. Leaves simple, opposite or alternate; stipules generally absent. Flowers bisexual, or unisexual and on separate plants as in Fuchsia,mostly regular and 4-parted with nectar inside (bird or insect-pollinated). Sepals 2, 4 or 5, joined edge to edge in bud. Petals 0, 2, 4 or 5. Stamens usually 8 in 2 whorls. Ovary inferior or half-inferior, of 4 united carpels with mostly 2, 4 or 5 chambers containing 1-many ovules with axile placentation. Style 1. Fruit a dehiscent or indehiscent capsule or a berry; seeds solitary or numerous.
A popular family best known for the highly ornamental fuchsias. Several genera have species that have naturalised quite widely.
18 genera with about 650 species; cosmopolitan with a centre of distribution in SW N America.
Flower parts in 4s; ovary inferior and generally with an elongated calyx tube.
Source: (2002). Onagraceae. In: . Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 3. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 2. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.