Decumbent sterile shoots absent, or when present, short, stems not obscured by overlapping leaves. Leaf blades linear-lanceolate to lanceolate or narrowly oblong, softly pubescent to subglabrous. 2n = 72. Flowering spring. Limestone rocks, woodlands, serpentine barrens; 0-300 m; Ont.; Del., D.C., Ill., Ind., Iowa, Ky., Md., Mass., Mich., Minn., Mo., N.J., N.Y., Ohio, Pa., Tenn., Va., W.Va.
From Flora of Indiana (1940) by Charles C. Deam
It is to be expected that this plant with a distribution throughout Europe and Asia and in North America would show a wide variation. Under this name are included many forms. Some European authors have divided this species complex into several subspecies. American authors have divided it into at least 4 varieties while others do not divide it. Cerastium arvense var. oblongifolium has been reported from Indiana but the habitat ascribed to this variety precludes its appearance in Indiana. This variety is not well described so I am omitting it. Fernald & Wiegand in their article cited at the beginning of this genus said the species is a complex which they were not willing to divide. It is probable that when a larger series of specimens and more notes are at hand the forms can be delimited. In Indiana there are two well-defined forms and it seems best to assign one to the species and separate the other from it. I have included under the species name our larger and glandular plant which has the distribution shown on the map. These plants were found in large colonies on the alluvial banks of the Mississinewa, Salamonie, and Wabash Rivers. The two northern locations belong to the glabrous form of the species. The species and its varieties are found in the northern hemisphere around the world. Cerastium undetermined. I have two specimens of this form which I found on high, wooded and gravelly banks of the St. Joseph River in Elkhart and St. Joseph Counties. This plant is strikingly different and has a dry soil habitat instead of a moist one. It is represented by my nos. 38515 and 38540.