Some 11 species of deciduous shrubs or small trees. The number of species recognized by botanists has varied from as many as 60 (by "splitters") to as few as 3 (by "lumpers"). Leaves alternate or occasionally opposite, compound (trifoliate or 5-foliate). Flowers in clusters, greenish-white, small, 4-5 each sepals and petals, both occasionally 6. Fruit a samara, circular, winged.
Ptelia: the Greek name of the elm tree, which has similar winged fruit.