A pretty plant, one to four feet tall, with a slender stem and long, narrow, bluish-green leaves, with somewhat wavy margins, and almost no leaf-stalks. The flowers are fragile and pretty, of various shades of pink, the shape of small Morning-glories, half an inch across, the stamens and style protruding. There are from three to five in a cluster, in a purple and green involucre. This involucre is curious, for before the flowers come out it is closed around a bunch of buds, looking as if it were itself a pretty five-angled bud, and one would not suspect that there were other little buds inside it. When the flowers bloom and drop, which they do very soon, this involucre unfolds and expands until it becomes an exceedingly thin, papery, five-lobed disk, three-quarters of an inch across, veined with purple, very pretty and delicate, looking like an odd little flower without a heart. The smooth stem forks towards the top and the branches, which are slightly hairy, bear numerous clusters of involucres with flowers inside them. This grows in dry soil, is widely distributed and found as far east as Illinois.

Involucre of Allionia linearis

Involucre of Allionia linearis. CARPET-WEED FAMILY. Aizoaceae.