Annual herbs; stems prostrate, 4-angled, somewhat scabrid with small, deflexed prickles. Leaves and stipules similar, in whorls of 4-6, sessile; lower leaves obovate-cuspidate, soon withering; upper leaves oblanceolate, mucronate. Flowers in heads; heads axillary, pedunculate, with up to 10 connate leaves forming an involucre, 4- to 10-flowered. Calyx 4- to 6-toothed, persistent in fruit. Corolla 4-lobed, lilac, funnel-shaped with a long tube. Stamens 4. Ovary 2-locular with a single ovule in each locule; style filiform, bifid, branches unequal; stigmas capitate. Fruit of 2, 1-seeded mericarps. x = 11.
Species 1, Europe, Mediterranean, West Asia; 1 naturalised in sthn Afr.: *Sherardia arvensis L., Eastern Cape.