PLANT: Herbaceous perennials, the rootstock starchy to woody. LEAVES: long-petioled, subentire or deeply parted into 5-9 lobes, orbicular to reniform. INFLORESCENCE: cymes, terminal, few-flowered. FLOWERS: zygomorphic, 5-8 cm in diameter; sepals linear to oblong-ovate, imbricate; petals showy, flesh-salmon, yellow, to orange-salmon, the lateral petals with 1 conspicuous maroon mark at the base, upper petals with 2 conspicuous maroon marks at the base; stamens unequal, in 2 sets, the filaments and anthers of the lower set slightly longer and tinged with maroon or cream; anthers with 2 apical pores; ovary with 3 carpels. FRUITS: globose to ellipsoid, pendulous, the exocarp woody at maturity, endocarp very thin, transparent. SEEDS: reniform, subglobose, or globose, the seed coat subglabrous, pilose, or strigose; endosperm oily. NOTES: 4 spp; sw U.S., n Mex. through C. Amer. to Colombia and Peru, also on Curacao. (for P. J. Amoreux). Sprague, T. 1922. Kew Bull. 1922(3):97-105. Poppendieck, H. 1981. Flora Neotropica Monogr.27:18-26. REFERENCES: Hodgson, Wendy. 1994. Bixaceae. J. Ariz. - Nev. Acad. Sci. Volume 27, 188-189.