Description: Annual or perennial herbs, sometimes woody at base, glabrous or scabrous.
Leaves opposite or whorled; stipules scarious, silvery.
Flowers small in axillary clusters, almost concealed by silvery-scarious bracts. Sepals 5, hooded. Petals minute or absent. Stamens 2–5. Ovary 1-locular; styles 2.
Capsule enclosed in calyx, 1-seeded, indehiscent.
Distribution and occurrence: World: c. 100 species, North & South America, Europe. Australia: 3 species (naturalized), N.S.W., Vic., S.A.
Text by A. Doust
| ||Key to the species|| |
|1||Flower clusters ± exposed; internodes clearly visible; flowers glabrous or with a few short hairs; sepals equal, deeply hooded at maturity; awns 0.5–1 mm long, spreading||Paronychia brasiliana|
|Flower clusters mostly concealed by leaves and stipules; internodes hidden also; flowers with short hairs; sepals somewhat unequal, slightly hooded; awns 0.4–0.7 mm long, erect to spreading||Paronychia franciscana|