19. Moenchia Ehrhart, Neues Mag. Aerzte. 5: 203. 1783.
Upright chickweed [for Conrad Moench, 1744-1805, professor at Marburg, Germany]
Richard K. Rabeler, Ronald L. Hartman
Herbs, annual. Taproots slender. Stems ascending to erect, simple or sometimes branched proximally, terete. Leaves: cauline leaves connate proximally, sessile or sometimes petiolate (basal leaves); blade 1-veined, linear to linear-oblanceolate, not succulent, apex acute. Inflorescences terminal, 1-3-flowered, spreading cymes or flowers solitary; bracts paired, foliaceous, those of axillary flowers with scarious margins. Pedicels erect. Flowers: perianth and androecium hypogynous; sepals 4, distinct, green, lanceolate, 3.8-7 mm, herbaceous, margins white or silvery, scarious, apex acute; petals 4 or rarely absent, white, claw absent, blade apex entire; nectaries at base of filaments opposite sepals; stamens 4, inserted at base of ovary; filaments distinct nearly to base; staminodes absent; styles 4, filiform, 0.7-1 mm, glabrous proximally; stigmas 4, linear along adaxial surface of styles, minutely papillate (50×). Capsules cylindric, opening by 8 revolute teeth, shorter than or equaling sepals; carpophore absent. Seeds 35-55, brown, reniform with deep abaxial groove, laterally compressed, papillate, marginal wing absent, appendage absent. x = 19.
Species 3 (1 in the flora): introduced; Europe (Mediterranean region); introduced in Africa (Republic of South Africa), Australia.
Ketzner, D. M. 1996. Crepis pulchra (Asteraceae) and Moenchia erecta (Caryophyllaceae) in Illinois. Trans. Illinois State Acad. Sci. 89: 21-23. Rabeler, R. K. 1991. Moenchia erecta (Caryophyllaceae) in eastern North America. Castanea 56: 150-151.