Ruta, origin of the name uncertain but probably from the Greek ruta meaning repentance. Trees, shrubs or herbs; leaves alternate or opposite, simple or compound, translucent aromatic oil glands present, citrus smell common. Flowers 4-5-merous, distinct calyx and corolla, petals free or basally fused; outer staminal whorl usually opposite the petals. Ovary usually lobed and on a disc; fruits various.