PLANT: Trees or shrubs, usually dioecious, often bitter due to triterpenoid lactone compounds called quassinoids. LEAVES: alternate or rarely opposite, pinnately compound or simple. INFLORESCENCE: a panicle or raceme, or flowers solitary. FLOWERS: actinomorphic; sepals 3-8, more or less connate, imbricate, or valvate; petals 3-8, distinct or connate; disk prominent; stamens usually twice as many as the petals; carpels 2-8, usually distinct or only partially connate; ovary superior. FRUIT: a capsule (often schizocarpic), drupe, or samara. NOTES: Ca. 25 genera, ca. 150 spp., chiefly tropical and subtropical. Some species have been used medicinally. REFERENCES: Brasher, Jeffrey W. 1999. Simaroubaceae. Ariz. - Nev. Acad. Sci. 32(1).