Climbing or creeping, glabrous shrub to 15 m. Stems 4-6-angled, flexuose, unarmed or prickly. Leaves alternate; petiole 1-2 cm., not thickened towards apex, with long tendrils inserted at base; blade triangular, oblong, ovate, lanceolate, sometimes reniform, sometimes blotched with white, 3-15 cm. long, 2-7 cm. broad, acute to acuminate at the apex, cordate, hastate, truncate or sagittate at the base, coriaceous to subcoriaceous, 5-9-nerved, petiole, margins, adaxial midrib and nerves beneath sometimes prickly, prickles 1-3 mm. long. Inflorescence of sessile and subsessile umbels, inserted distichously along an extended flexuose rhachis, 1.5-15 cm. long; bracteoles very small; pedicels 2-9 mm., longer than the flowers. Perianth-segments linear-oblong to elliptic, obtuse, 2-4(-5) × 1 mm., white, cream, greenish, pink, yellowish or brownish, fragrant; inner segments equal to or more often shorter and narrower than outer. Stamens shorter than the perianth; anthers yellow-green, shorter than the filaments. Staminodes 6. Ovary green; stigmas oblong, recurved. Berry red or black, 5-8 mm. wide, 3-seeded. Fig. 1.
HAB. Edges, clearings and rocky places of upland evergreen forest and associated bushland or thicket, often in damp places near rivers and marshes; 1450-2745 m.
Tanzania Kitivo North Forest Reserve, Mar. 1970 (? fl.), Shabani 533!
Kenya Limuru Girls School road, Feb. 1970 (? fl. & fr), Faden 70/70!
Uganda Bwamba Hill (? fl.), Maitland 1071!
Tanzania E. Mufindi, Aug. 1933 (? fl.), Greenway 3496!
Kenya Nanyuki R., June 1943 (? fl.), Moreau 49!
Kenya Kinangop, Apr. 1938 (fr.), Chandler 2410!
Tanzania Lumakarya Forest Reserve, Mar. 1954 (♂ fl.), Paulo 281!
Uganda Kanaba Gap, Dec. 1938 (? fl.), Chandler & Hancock 2643! & Mt Muhavuru, Nkanda, Nov. 1954 (? fl.), Stauffer 935!
Sp. Pl.: 1028 (1753); A. & C. DC., Monogr. Phan. 1:163 (1878). Type: plant grown in Clifford's garden in Netherlands (BM-CLIFF)