Perennial herb up to 60 cm, rarely more. Leaves sparsely hispid, sessile, cordate amplexicaul, ovate-oblong, acute. Inflorescences capitate, 10-50-flowered; Petals bright scarlet, sometimes white, long-clawed, bifid for 1/3 of the lamina; Capsule light brown, ellipsoid, as long as calyx or slightly longer. Seeds black, reniform, coarsely tuberculate, c. 1 mm diameter.
Asia-Temperate, Asia-Tropical: Jawa (Jawa cultivated), Eastern Europe to temperate central Asia present
Eastern Europe to temperate central Asia including China. Widely cultivated. In Malesia grown as an ornamental in Java.