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Mimulus guttatus (Yellow monkeyflower)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Mimulus guttatus

Mimulus guttatus DC.

Yellow Monkeyflower, Golden Monkeyflower, Seep Monkeyflower, Common Monkeyflower, Seep Monkey-flower

Scrophulariaceae (Figwort Family)

Synonym(s): Mimulus arvensis, Mimulus bakeri, Mimulus brachystylis, Mimulus clementinus, Mimulus cordatus, Mimulus cuspidata, Mimulus decorus, Mimulus equinnus, Mimulus glabratus var. ascendens, Mimulus glareosus, Mimulus grandiflorus, Mimulus grandis, Mimulus guttatus ssp. arenicola, Mimulus guttatus ssp. arvensis, Mimulus guttatus ssp. haidensis, Mimulus guttatus ssp. litoralis, Mimulus guttatus ssp. micranthus, Mimulus guttatus ssp. scouleri, Mimulus guttatus var. arvensis, Mimulus guttatus var. decorus, Mimulus guttatus var. depauperatus, Mimulus guttatus var. gracilis, Mimulus guttatus var. grandis, Mimulus guttatus var. hallii, Mimulus guttatus var. insignis, Mimulus guttatus var. laxus, Mimulus guttatus var. lyratus, Mimulus guttatus var. microphyllus, Mimulus guttatus var. nasutus, Mimulus guttatus var. puberulus, Mimulus hallii, Mimulus hirsutus, Mimulus langsdorffii, Mimulus langsdorffii var. argutus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. arvensis, Mimulus langsdorffii var. californicus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. grandis, Mimulus langsdorffii var. guttatus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. insignis, Mimulus langsdorffii var. microphyllus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. minimus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. nasutus, Mimulus langsdorffii var. platyphyllus, Mimulus laxus, Mimulus longulus, Mimulus luteus var. depauperatus, Mimulus luteus var. gracilis, Mimulus lyratus, Mimulus maguirei, Mimulus marmoratus, Mimulus micranthus, Mimulus microphyllus, Mimulus nasutus, Mimulus nasutus var. micranthus, Mimulus paniculatus, Mimulus pardalis, Mimulus parishii, Mimulus petiolaris, Mimulus prionophyllus, Mimulus procerus, Mimulus puberulus, Mimulus puncticalyx, Mimulus rivularis, Mimulus scouleri, Mimulus sookensis, Mimulus subreniformis, Mimulus tenellus, Mimulus thermalis, Mimulus unimaculatus


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

An extremely variable, leafy plant ranging from spindly and tiny to large and bushy, with yellow bilaterally symmetrical flowers on slender stalks in upper leaf axils. Seep Monkey-flower or Golden Monkey-flower grows as an annual or perennial and is known for its spikes of snapdragon-like flowers topping leafy, 6-30 in. stems. The bright-yellow flowers, spotted with red on the lower lip, appear against soft, light-green, broadly rounded and toothed leaves.

In this large genus of several look-alikes with yellow corollas, Common Monkeyflower is distinguished by the longer upper tooth on the angular calyx.


From the Image Gallery

25 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Annual
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 30 inches tall.
Leaf: Green

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Red , Yellow
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DE , ID , MI , MT , ND , NE , NM , NV , NY , OR , PA , SD , UT , WA , WY
Canada: BC
Native Distribution: AK & Yukon, s. through w. U.S. through Mexico to Guatemala; also n. MI
Native Habitat: Stream banks; wet places to 10,000 ft.

Growing Conditions

Water Use: High
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium
Soil Description: Moist soils.
Conditions Comments: Golden monkey flower is a perennial in warm zones and a half-hardy annual in colder places. Light afternoon shade will prolong the bloom period.


Conspicuous Flowers: yes


Description: Broadcast seed in spring or fall. One plant spreads widely. Divide dormant rootstocks in fall or winter or when growth begins in spring. Can also be increased by cuttings.
Seed Treatment: Seeds germinate without pretreatment.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

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 Organizations Directory

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

Santa Barbara Botanic Garden - Santa Barbara, CA
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

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


Record Modified: 2023-02-20
Research By: TWC Staff

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