Primrose, Evening Common

Plant Height 6-10 Inches
Seed Count 1,500,000 Seeds per Acre
Botanical Name Oenothera biennis
Life Cycle Biennial
Environment Full Sun
Preferred Sites Mesic Soils _ Upland/Grassland
Bloom Period July-October
Flower Color Yellow


Evening Primrose Family is a biennial, herbaceous forb. The family is so-named because the flowers are partially to fully closed during the day and open in the evening. The plant grows from 3-25 dm tall. Basal leaves, which form a rosette, are from 10-30 dm long. The stem has alternate, lanceolate-shaped leaves, 2.5-15 cm long, that are shallowly toothed and wavy at the edges. The leaves are usually hair. The plant flowers can from June through October.

USES: Common evening-primrose is commercially cultivated in over 15 countries for its oil which contains the essential fatty acids, linoleic acid and gamma linolenic acid. When the seedpods ripen, the tall stalks can be cut and use as interesting additions to dried arrangements.

WILDLIFE: Hummingbirds visit the flowers to obtain nectar and insects to eat. The seed capsules provide food for many other birds during the winter months.

WEEDINESS:This plant may become weedy or invasive in some regions or habitats and may displace desirable vegetation if not properly managed.

ADAPTATION: Common evening-primrose grows in dry open fields, along roadsides, railroad embankments, waste areas and in open woods.

ESTABLISHMENT: These plants do best in well-drained soils in full sun.


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