In a genus with only a few species there is a surprising diversity. Two have similar form, micranthus and pectinatus, that of a tubular rosette that is not much bigger in diameter than a large soda straw. The leaves are about a half in wide or so, spiny on the margins and form a tight water-tight tube and then flare out towards the tip. Clusters of individual plants will form on short stolons. The color becomes coppery-reddish in good light and the inflorescence with bears one to several branches is pendant. The floral bracts are rather broad and recurve outward. In good light the entire inflorescence turns bright orange-red and when they form, the fruit is dark purple. Native from Costa Rica to Colombia and across to Brazil.