Paronychia canadensis is an annual herb from a taproot, 3-40 cm tall, stems erect, very slender, hairless, forked many times, bushy-branched, internodes elongate; stipules membranous, needle-shaped, to 0.4 cm long.
Leaves opposite, elliptic, thin, 0.3-3 cm long, 0.1-1 cm wide.
Flowers pale green to brownish, 0.1 cm long, cylindric, above small membranous bracts, (use lens) no petals, calyx 5-lobed, margins membranous, divided almost to base, tips of lobes hooded; stamens 5; ovary superior, style 2-parted; blooms and fruits July-Oct.
Fruit dry, rounded, a membranous, inflated capsule to 0.8 cm long, 1-seeded, longer than persistent calyx (Flora of North America 1993+).
Wetland status: UPL.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Habitat: Dry, open sandy soil.