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..
An acaulescent perennial herb, with orbicular cordate crenate-dentate long-petioled basal leaves, and numerous small white flowers, spicate-racemose at the ends of tall mostly naked slender scapes. Calyx minutely 2-bracteolate at the base, 5-parted, the sepals nerveless. Corolla 5-divided, the petals oblong, entire, adnate to the bases of the monadelphous stamens. Stamen-tube 10-lobed at the summit, the lobes which are opposite the petals petaloid (staminodia), those alternate with the petals antheriferous; anthers nearly sessile, granular on the back, 1-celled, transversely 2-valvcd. Style very short. Seeds ovoid, the testa loose. [Greek, milk; name not characteristic of this genus.]
A monotypic genus of southeastern North America.
Galax aphylla L. Sp. Pl. 200. 1753.
Scape 1 1/2° high, terete, with red scaly bracts at the base and many red fibrous roots. Leaves orbicular, or broadly ovate, deeply cordate at the base with a rather narrow sinus, persistent, crenate-dentate or doubly denticulate with mucronulate or rounded teeth, shining, commonly shorter than their slender petioles, 1' - 3' in diameter; spike-like raceme dense, narrow, 2'-5' long; flowers 1 1/2"-2" broad, spreading; bractlets deciduous; capsule ovoid, acute, erect, very short-pedicelled, 1" long, slightly exceeding the lanceolate acutish sepals.