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Lysimachia quadrifolia (Whorled yellow loosestrife)
Cressler, Alan

Lysimachia quadrifolia

Lysimachia quadrifolia L.

Whorled yellow loosestrife, Whorled loosestrife, Prairie loosestrife

Primulaceae (Primrose Family)


USDA Symbol: LYQU2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)

A 1-3 ft. perennial with very narrow, stiff leaves and slightly toothed, yellow flowers from leaf axils. Delicate, yellow, stalked, star-like flowers rise from the axils of whorled leaves.

The whorled leaves and flowers are the characteristic features of this rapidly spreading member of the Primrose Family. The genus name honors Lysimachus, a king of ancient Sicily who is said to have used a member of the genus to pacify a maddened bull. Colonists also fed the plant to oxen so that they would work together peacefully.


Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Class: 1-3 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jul , Aug


USA: AL , CT , DC , DE , GA , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , PA , RI , SC , TN , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: NB
Native Distribution: Ont. & Man., s. to w. VA, KY, IL & n. AR
Native Habitat: Fens; moist prairies

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist, sometimes limey, soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available


Conspicuous Flowers: yes

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.


Description: Seeds require light for germination so sow on top of soil.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Not Available
Commercially Avail: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Suppliers Directory

According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:

American Native Nursery - Quakertown, PA

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE
* Available Online from Wildflower Center Store


Bibref 1620 - Gardening with Native Plants of the South (Reprint Edition) (2009) Wasowski, S. with A. Wasowski
Bibref 946 - Gardening with Prairie Plants: How to Create Beautiful Native Landscapes (2002) Wasowski, Sally
* The Midwestern Native Garden: Native Alternatives to Nonnative Flowers and Plants An Illustrated Guide (2011) Adelman, Charlotte and Schwartz, Bernard L.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Additional resources

USDA: Find Lysimachia quadrifolia in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Lysimachia quadrifolia in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Lysimachia quadrifolia


Record Modified: 2014-09-25
Research By: TWC Staff

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