COMMON EVENING PRIMROSE
File Size: 101 KB
 
Oenothera villosa  Thunb.
Riley County, Kansas
Biennial
Height: 1- 6 feet
Family: Onagraceae - Evening Primrose Family
Flowering Period:   July, August, September,October
Stems: Erect, simple or much-branched above, densely appressed-hairy.
Leaves: Alternate, simple, sessile or short-stalked below, lanceolate, 3-6 inches long, .5-1.5 inches wide, grayish, appressed-hairy; margins wavy-toothed to nearly entire.
Inflorescences: Spikes, simple or branched, terminal.
Flowers: 1 to 1.5 inches wide, floral tubes .75 to 1.5 inches long; sepals 4, .5 to .75 inch long, bending abruptly backward, nearly glabrous or hairy; tips pointed; petals 4, obovate, 1/3 to 2/3 inch long, yellow, fading orange; tips slightly notched; stamens 8, nearly as long as petals; stigma with 4 linear lobes.
Fruits: Capsules, cylindric, .75 to 1.5 inches long, hairy; seeds small, egg-shaped, dark brown to black, often purple-spotted.
Habitat: Prairie hillsides, waste areas, roadsides, open woods, and stream and lake edges, in dry or damp soils.
Distribution: Throughout Kansas.
Origin: Common evening primrose was introduced to Europe in the early 17th century, where its taproot was used as a parsnip-like vegetable.
Uses: The Navajo mixed the dried leaves with tobacco and smoked it to bring good luck hunting.
Comments: Flowers open in the evening and usually wither the following day.

Common evening primrose stem and leaves
190 KB
Riley County, Kansas
Common evening primrose petals, stamens and stigma
81 KB
Riley County, Kansas