Scandent robust perennial vine. Stems 0.25-1 cm in diameter, sometimes hollow, glabrous to sparsely puberulent with unbranched trichomes; internodes 10-20 cm; prickles 1.5-5 x 2-3 mm at base, straight to recurved.
Sympodial units difoliate, geminate.
Leaves simple and compound, even on the same specimen; simple leaves with blades 4.5-9 x 2.5-5 cm, ca. 2 times as long as wide, ovate; compound leaves imparipinnate, 20-50 x 20-40 cm, ca. 1-1.5 times as long as wide, with 2-4 pairs of subopposite leaflets, the leaflet blades 5-20 x 4-9 cm, ovate to elliptic, subcoriaceous, glabrous adaxially, glabrous to puberulent abaxially, armed with recurved prickles abaxially on midvein; major lateral veins 7-15 on each side; base truncate to acute, oblique; margin entire; apex acute to attenuate; rachis broadly or narrowly winged with tissue like that of leaflets, to 1.5 cm wide, armed below with recurved prickles; petioles 3.5-7 cm, sometimes winged to base, glabrous.
Inflorescences 3-25 (-35) cm, to 45 cm and elongating in fruit, opposite a leaf pair, unbranched or forked, with 10-25 flowers, the plants andromonoecious, with only the lowermost flowers fertile, one fruit developing per inflorescence, the axes glabrous or nearly so, occasionally armed with prickles; peduncle 1-4 cm; rachis 3-6 (-22) cm; pedicels 1-10 mm in flower, 20-30 mm in fruit, spaced 1-2 mm apart, congested toward tip of inflorescence, articulated at or slightly above the base, leaving swollen scars.
Flowers heterostylous, 5-merous. Calyx 6-10 mm in diameter, 3-4 mm long, spreading, the tube 5-7 mm, the lobes 1-2 x 1-2 mm, ovate, acute at apices, glabrous; fruiting calyx accrescent. Corollas 1-2.5 cm in diameter, spreading to reflexed, stellate, chartaceous, greenish-white, the tube 1-2 mm, the lobes 6-10 x 1-2 mm at base, narrowly triangular to lanceolate, acute at apices, glabrous adaxially and abaxially. Stamens with filaments 1-2 mm; anthers 6-9 x 2 mm at base and then tapering, long-attenuate, connivent, yellow, the pores small and directed distally. Ovary sparsely pubescent; style 3-6 x ca. 0.25 mm, cylindrical, straight, glabrous to sparsely puberulent; stigma truncate.
Fruits 2-6 x 3-7 cm, usually globose, rarely obovoid (pyriform), bright orange when ripe, glabrous, the surface appearing rugose when dry. Stone-cell aggregates absent.
Seeds 2.3-5 x 3-4 mm, strongly flattened, light brown, the surface foveolate, the margin thickened.