Small perennial or annual, insectivorous herbs. Primary root often reduced, with tubers or small rhizomes. Leaves spiral, sometimes whorled, often in a basal rosette; lamina with insect-trapping glandular hairs. Inflorescence terminal, axillary or lateral; stipules present or absent. Flowers bisexual, actinomorphic; calyx, corolla and androecium 4- or 5-merous; sepals shortly united at base; petals free, persistent; stamens free, alternating with petals, anthers bilocular, opening outwards by longitudinal slits; ovary superior, unilocular, 3–5 carpellate; placentation parietal; ovules many; styles as many as placentas, free or fused, often divided. Fruit a loculicidal capsule within a persistent calyx; seeds many, small, endospermic.
4 genera with c. 100 species in temperate and tropical countries; 2 genera with c. 55 species in Australia.