Herbs sturdy, densely stellate tomentose. Stems decumbent, 10-40 cm, much branched. Petiole very short; basal leaves in a rosette, drying soon; upper leaves verticillate or opposite, obovate to oblong-spatulate, 6-24 × 5-15 mm, base attenuate, decurrent, margin entire, apex obtuse, rounded, or acute. Flowers several, in groups, sessile or subsessile. Tepals elliptic or oblong, 4-6(-10) mm. Stamens usually 3-15, free. Ovary ovoid, 5-loculed; styles 5, free, linear, short, curved outward. Capsule ovoid, ca. as long as persistent tepals, 5-valved. Seeds numerous, chestnut-brown, reniform, granulose; strophiole scrotiform, ca. 2/3 as long as seed or longer. Fl. and fr. spring-summer. 2n = 36.
Stems 0.5-3.5 dm. Leaves whor-led; petiole 1-7 mm; blade obovate or orbiculate to broadly spatulate, 5-25 × 0.4-17 mm, base cuneate, apex broadly rounded to acute. Flowers in clusters of 3-15; sepals lanceolate, 3.5-4.1 × 0.4-2 mm, stellate-pubescent abaxially, glabrous adaxially, apex rounded to acute or slightly mucronate; stamens 3-5. Capsules ellipsoid, 3.6-4.5 × 1.8-2 mm. Seeds 10-25 per locule, orange-brown, 0.4-0.6 × 0.3-0.4 mm, papillate, somewhat glossy or dull; papillae sometimes black. 2n = 36.
Fruiting calyx 2.5–4.5 mm. broad, 5–8 mm. long.
A semi-erect, decumbent or prostrate and rosette-forming pale- or grey-green diffusely-branched densely stellate pubescent herb up to 20 cm. high; branchlets 10–45 cm. long.
Staminodes 0–9, strap-shaped, two-pronged at the apex.
Flowers greenish-white, sometimes with a pink tinge, not conspicuous, in tight nodal fascicles, 2–10 per node, pedicellate; pedicels 1.5–4 mm. long.
Leaves opposite or apparently verticillate, petiolate, 10–42 mm. long (including petiole of 1–11 mm.), 5–22 mm. broad; blade elliptic or obovate or suborbicular, plane or the veins impressed above and prominent below, entire or the margin obscurely wavy, subacute to rounded at the apex, cuneate at the base.
Ovary of 5, rarely 3 united carpels.
Seeds dark brown, usually with ridges, with or without tubercles, the aril c. 1/2 the length of the seed.
Flowers greenish-white, sometimes with a pink tinge, apparently cleistogamous, inconspicuous, clustered at nodes, 2–10 per node; pedicels 1–4 mm. long.
Perianth-segments up to 8 mm. long, more or less keeled, acute or mucronate, remaining closed around the fruit.
Ovary of (3)5 united carpels; stigmas (3)5.
Staminodes 0–8, strap-shaped, 2-fid at apex.
A decumbent, semi-prostrate or prostrate spreading rosulate herb up to 30 cm. high, diffusely branched, covered with whitish silky stellate hairs.
Leaves alternate, opposite or apparently verticillate; laminae 2–37 × 4–23 mm., elliptic, obovate, spathulate or circular, entire; base cuneate, apex subacute to rounded; petiole up to 1–3 cm. long, green when glabrous or glabrescent, whitish when densely covered with persistent stellate silky hairs.
Covered all over with rather rigid stellate and simple spreading hairs. Stems 15-50 cm long, with internodes usually less than 1 cm long. Lower leaves alternate, the upper in whorls of 2-4, petiolate, the blades obovate to almost orbicular, 0.5-3 cm long, 0.5-2 cm wide, obtuse or subacute; petioles 0.3-1.5 cm long. Flowers solitary or more often in groups of 3-8 or more, on pedicels 1-3 mm long. Perianth segment 3-9 mm long, acute or mucronate, more or less keeled, the inner with broad membranous edges. Stamens 10-20 or more, rarely 3-5, the outer often without anthers. Stigmas 3 or 5. Seeds dark brown, smooth or with raised ridges, with or without tubercles, the aril about half the length of the seed.
Much-branched, prostrate annual, stems 150-500 mm long, covered with stellate and simple hairs. Leaves alternate below, with upper ones in whorls, narrowly elliptic to ovate, ± fleshy, without stipules. Flowers 1 or 3-8 axillary cymes, sepals with acute mucronate tips, yellowish to whitish green on inside, inner 3 with membranous edges, stamens 10-20 or more.
Throughout Central Africa, also tropical Asia, and in Australia. In Europe, in Spain, Sicily and Bulgaria.