As currently treated, Pluchea is a heterogeneous group of species, variable in habit (trees and shrubs to herbs) and foliar, floral, and fruit morphology. The American, primarily herbaceous, species are divided into groups (G. L. Nesom 1989): sect. Pluchea, sect. Amplectifolium G. L. Nesom, and sect. Pterocaulis G. L. Nesom. Among the woody species, segregate genera have been recognized (Tessaria Ruiz & Pavón, Berthelotia de Candolle, Eremohylema A. Nelson); boundaries among segregates have not been clearly drawn.