Silene dichotoma is an annual herb to 80 cm, very hairy.
Leaves opposite, lance-shaped, lower leaves with hairy stalks, upper leaves stalkless; blade to 8 cm long, 3.5 cm wide.
Flowers white to reddish, petals 5, to 0.9 cm above calyx, deeply 2-lobed, calyx tubular, narrow, to 1.5 cm long, hairy, with 10 green veins, stamens longer than calyx; inflorescences of spike-like stalks, forked once or twice, branches leafy, flowers along one side of branches; blooming June-Sept.
Fruit a dry, 3-parted, capsule, seeds 0.1 cm, finely wrinkled (use lens).
Wetland status: NL.
Frequency in NYC: Very infrequent.
Habitat: Open areas, moist, disturbed sites (Hough 1983).