Fls 4-merous; hypanthium usually prolonged a little beyond the summit of the elongate, slender ovary and simulating a cal-tube; sep ovate to lanceolate, deciduous from the fr; pet white to pink or purple; stamens 8, often unequal; style short; stigma clavate, ovoid, or 4-cleft; capsule linear, elongate, 4-valved; seeds numerous, small, bearing a terminal coma of hairs; annual or usually perennial herbs, rarely subshrubs, with alternate or opposite, linear to ovate lvs; fls many to few in elongate or short terminal racemes, or even solitary. 200, N. and S. Temp. and Arctic.
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.