This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol2", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Herbs, or shrubby plants, with diffusely branching stems. Leaves alternate, petioled, the blades often membranous. Flowers monoecious, axillary, pedicelled, the staminate often clustered, with a 5-6-lobed calyx, 5 or 6 petals, a glandular or lobed disk, 5 or 6 stamens and distinct filaments; pistillate flowers solitary, with a 5-6-lobed calyx, minute petals or these wanting; ovary 3-celled; styles stout, 2-cleft or 2-parted; ovules 2 in each cavity. Capsules dry, separating into 3 2-valved carpels. Seed somewhat curved, rugose; endosperm fleshy; embryo curved. [From the Greek for Portulaca.]
About 12 species, of wide geographic distribution. Type species: Andrachne Telephioides L.
Soc. 5: 175. 1837. Andrachne phyllanthoides Mull. Arg. in DC. Prodr.
15: 435. 1862.
A straggling much branched shrub, 1°-3° tall, with glabrous lustrous branches and minutely pubescent twigs. Leaves numerous, the blades obovate or oval, 4"-9" long, retuse or obtuse at the apex, often mucronulate, bright green, paler beneath than above, short-petioled; pedicels filiform, 3"-10" long, glabrous; calyx-segments ob-long-obovate, 3/4"-1 1/2" long, spreading; petals of two kinds, those of the staminate flowers narrowly obovate, or oblong-obovate, 3-5-toothed, greenish-yellow, those of the pistillate flowers smaller, broadly obovate, entire; capsule subglo-bose, rather fleshy until mature.