|Abstract||Shrubs or small trees, usually spiny. Leaves opposite, alternate or fascicled, exstipulate, simple, entire, penninerved, small. Flowers terminal and subterminal, sessile or nearly so, rather large, ♀, actinomorphic. Calyx thickly coriaceous, coloured, gamophyllous; tube campanulate-urceolate, adnate to the ovary and produced above it, inside with an annular thickening; segments 5-9, valvate in bud, ovate-triangular, acute, persistent. Petals the same number as calyx-lobes and alternating with them, imbricate and strongly crumpled in bud, obovate, deciduous. Stamens very numerous, inserted on the annular thickening of the calyx, deciduous; filaments incurved in bud, filiform, free; anthers dorsifixed, 2-celled; cells bursting longitudinally. Ovary entirely inferior or free at the top; cells several in 2-3 superposed rows, exceptionally 1-seriate; ovules numerous; those of the lower cells axile, of the upper parietal; style 1, robust, with a thickened base; stigma capitate. Berry large, subglobose, crowned by the unaltered calyx-segments, thick-walled, finally bursting irregularly, entirely filled up by the seeds. Seeds very numerous; outer layer of testa thick, fleshy-juicy; inner layer horny; endosperm none; cotyledons convolute.|
Distr. Two spp. viz P. protopunica BALF. f. confined to Socotra, and P. granatum L., a plant of very ancient cultivation in S. Europe, N. Africa, the Orient, tropical Asia, Malaysia, and China. Also introduced in the New World.