A large family, widely distributed, chiefly rough-hairy herbs, without stipules; usually with alternate, toothless leaves; flowers usually in coiled, one-sided clusters; calyx usually with five sepals; corolla usually symmetrical, with five united petals, often with crests or appendages in the throat; stamens five, inserted in the tube of the corolla, alternate with its lobes; ovary superior, with a single, sometimes two-cleft, style, and usually deeply four-lobed, like that of the Mint Family, forming in fruit four seed-like nutlets. Mature fruit is necessary to distinguish the different kinds. These plants superficially resemble some of the Waterleaf Family, but the four lobes of the ovary are conspicuous.

There are many kinds of Lappula, chiefly of the north-temperate zone; leaves narrow; corolla blue or white, salver-form or funnel-form, with a very short tube, the throat closed by five short scales, the stamens, with short filaments, hidden in the tube; ovary deeply four-lobed; style short; nutlets armed with barbed prickles, forming burs, giving the common name, Sticksced, and the Latin name, derived from "bur." Some of them resemble Forget-me-nots, but are not true Myosotis.