Trees, shrubs or woody vines. Leaves simple, alternate, usually toothed; stipules absent. Inflorescence an axillary cyme or panicle, sometimes flowers solitary. Flowers bisexual or unisexual, actinomorphic; sepals (3–)5(–8), usually imbricate in bud; petals (3–)5(–9), free or shortly united at base, imbricate in bud; stamens (10–)20–240, often in clusters opposite petals, sometimes fused to base of corolla; anthers opening by longitudinal slits or apical pores; ovary superior, usually 3–5-locular; ovules numerous, placentation axile; styles equal in number to locules. Fruit a berry or leathery capsule (not in Victoria); seeds numerous.
3 genera and c. 360 species from Asia and tropical regions of America; 2 species (1 native, 1 naturalised) in Australia.
Actinidia chinensis var. deliciosa (Kiwifruit) is widely grown for its edible fruit, and is sparingly naturalised in Victoria.