The bruised foliage of this species diffuses a pleasant and lasting anise-like fragrance which instantly reveals its identity. It yields a volatile oil, and at one time the dried leaves and flowers were steeped like tea, and used for medicinal purposes. Its smooth, toothless, bright green leaves are long and narrow, and are conspicuously dotted with minute, transparent specks. They are thin-textured, and have a prominent midrib. The slender, simple stem rises from two to four feet high, and is often reclining. The flowers are small and unattractive, and have three to four rays. They are arranged on small spreading stems in a loose, one-sided, plumelike terminal head. This species frequents the borders of thickets in dry or sandy soil from southern New Hampshire and Vermont to Florida, and west to Texas and Missouri, from July to September. It is common in the pine barrens of New Jersey.