Plants perennial, with over-wintering leafy shoots. Stems trailing, procumbent, or as-cending, much-branched, 5-25 cm. Leaves: petiole not winged, (0.1-)0.5-1(-3) cm; blade 1-veined, spatulate to ovate-lanceo-late, 0.6-2.5 × 0.3-1.4 cm. Cymes spreading, lax. Pedicels 2-6 mm. Flowers sometimes double; calyx usually purple, not cleft, 7-12 mm, glandular-pubescent; petals red or pink to white, blade 8-15 mm. Capsules 6-8 mm. Seeds 1.6-2 mm wide. 2n = 28 (Europe).
Flowering summer. Waste sites, rocky places, old gardens; 0-2200 m; introduced; Calif., Colo., Ind., Mass., Mich., N.Y., Oreg.; Europe.
Saponaria ocymoides is a long-cultivated rock-garden and wall plant that is only rarely persistent outside of gardens.