Rhizomatous and stoloniferous perennial forming colonies. Stems erect, 7-10cm or more high, bearing scale leaves on the lower part. True leaves few, more or less clustered at the stem tips, ovate to elliptic, glabrous or pilose, up to 3cm long. Flowers one to four at the stem tips, 1.5-2.3cm long, rose to purple with spreading wing sepals, late spring to summer. After the normal flowers finish, tiny cleistogamic ones develop on underground branches until autumn. Eastern North America from eastern Canada to Minnesota and Georgia, in woodland and on banks in light soils.