Fern like plants with a naked subterranean stem. Cataphylls absent.
Leaves pinnate or bipinnate, longitudinal ptyxis circinate, horizontal
ptyxis involute. Leaflets flat, with a mid rib, with numerous sub parallel
lateral veins and stomata on both surfaces, individual ptyxis flat.
Trichomes coloured or transparent, unbranched, short curved.
Male and female sporophylls peltate, without terminal spines,
spirally orthostichous and aggregated into terminal cones. Male
sporophylls with 2 collateral fertile areas on the abaxial surface,
and numerous sporangia. Female sporophylls with 2 sessile inverted
ovules on the inner surface. Seeds radiospermic.
A family of a single genus, Stangeria,
endemic in southern Africa.