Herbs, perennial, mat-forming. Leaves 2-ranked, gradually reduced toward end of flowering shoot; blade lanceolate or lanceolate-elliptic to ovate, 1--3 ´ 0.5--1.4 cm (distal leaf blades much narrower than sheaths when sheaths opened, flattened), margins scabrous, glabrous. Inflorescences terminal and axillary from distal leaves, pedunculate, composed of pairs of sessile cymes; bracts linear to linear-lanceolate, 2--6 mm. Flowers odorless, 4--5 mm wide, pedicillate; sepals distinct, maroon, 2--3 mm; petals white, ovate, 2.5 mm; stamens 6, nearly equal or antipetalous stamens slightly longer than antsepalous; filaments glabrous; ovary 3-locular. Capsules 3-locular. Seeds 0.6--0.7 mm. 2n = 14 (as floridana). Flowering spring--fall. Moist, usually shady places with calcareous soil, e.g., hummocks, fern grottoes, shell middens; Fla., Ga.; Mexico; West Indies; n South America. The single Georgia record, a specimen labeled Rome, Floyd County (Babcock s.n., MO), is considered credible by Dr. Nancy Coile.