Native to the United States, and found from Texas north to Illinois, east to the Atlantic coast and south to all the Gulf Coast states.
This is a perennial weed that may grow prostrate or ascending, and is capable of forming mats. It tolerates close mowing, but where not mowed may grow as tall as 30 inches. Propagation is from seeds, roots, and from stem fragments. The foliage dies back in cold weather, with re-growth from the roots.
Stems usually are prostrate, with rooting at their nodes. The stems are covered with hairs and are a reddish color. Leaves are opposite and attach to the stems without a stalk, but at the base there may be an elongated, thorn-like stipule. The leaves are long and lance-shaped, with rough margins and often with yellow mottling in the summer due to a virus. The small white flowers arise from the leaf axils, and have 4 petals that are joined tube-like at their bases.
Characteristicts Important to Control:
A systemic herbicide will be needed to control the underground parts, which are capable of regrowth each year. Pre-emergent herbicides can be effective in preventing seed growth.