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Gentiana alba (Plain gentian)
Wasowski, Sally and Andy

Gentiana alba

Gentiana alba Muhl. ex Nutt.

Plain Gentian, Yellow Gentian, Cream Gentian

Gentianaceae (Gentian Family)

Synonym(s): Gentiana flavida

USDA Symbol: GEAL4

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

Upright stems, 18-36 in. tall, end in a cluster of cream, funnel-shaped flowers, opening slightly at the tips. Bright green, opposite leaves line the stems.

The Gentians are named after King Gentius of ancient Illyria, who is said to have discovered the medicinal value of these plants.


From the Image Gallery

2 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AR , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , MD , MI , MN , MO , NC , NE , OH , OK , PA , WI , WV
Canada: ON
Native Distribution: PA, s. Ont., MI & Man., s. to n.w. NC & n. AR & KS
Native Habitat: Damp woods; prairies; meadows

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil Description: Moist, well-drained soils.

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Bumble Bees

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


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.

Web Reference

Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

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


Record Modified: 2023-02-13
Research By: TWC Staff

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