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Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia
Oenothera elata ssp. hookeri
Oenothera elata Kunth ssp. hookeri (Torr. & A. Gray) W. Dietr. & W.L. Wagner
Hooker's evening-primrose, Giant evening-primrose
Onagraceae (Evening-Primrose Family)
Synonym(s): Oenothera biennis var. hookeri, Oenothera hookeri, Oenothera hookeri ssp. montereyensis
USDA Symbol: OEELH2
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
This is one of the largest and showiest of the evening-primroses. The biennial spends its first year as a low rosette of leaves. The second year, clusters of bright yellow, 3 in., flowers are borne atop the leafy 3-6 ft. stems. These flowers unfurl in late afternoon or at dusk, are quite fragrant, and have four heart-shaped petals.
Other subspecies of O. elata occur throughout the West, east to Montana, Kansas, and Texas.
The subspecies of this plant is named for William Jackson Hooker (1785-1865), who was Director of Kew Gardens from 1841-1865. He wrote “Flora boreali-americana” and many other works. He was founder and editor of “Journal of Botany”.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Biennial Habit: Herb Leaf:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep
DistributionUSA: CA Native Distribution:
s. to Mex. Native Habitat:
Sandy stream banks; low, marshy areas
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Moist soils.
Conditions Comments: This plant tends to become weedy.
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
PropagationDescription: Plant untreated seed in the fall. As with other biennials, it is best to plant the seeds two successive years to establish a continuously flowering population.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Seeds germinate without pretreatment.
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden
- Santa Barbara, CANative Seed Network
- Corvallis, OR
Record Last Modified: 2010-06-04
Research By: TWC Staff