Common Sundrops
Oenothera fruticosa
Onagraceae (Evening Primrose) Family

Common Sundrops are presented on an erect stem or reclining; usually branched perennial, which may form dense colonies on steep embankments. Preferred habitat is on meadows, thin woods, the margins of fresh water and brackish marshes, stable dunes and at roadside. Distribution is throughout the Escambia region. On meadowland or shallow roadside ditches the plants may appear as an individuals scattered in no orderly fashion.

Leaves are widest in the center and may be several times longer than broad, or
egg-shaped; no teeth and no lobes.

Flowering usually occurs on second year growth. Flower buds are erect. Petals are
yellow, with long anthers that extend beyond the corolla. Stigmas protrude beyond
anthers when pollen is shedding. Flower occurs in spring and summer.

Fruit is a club-shaped capsule, with gland hairs that lay flat on the fruit.

The primrose we see most often notice is the O. biennis; which will reach heights of six feet or more. As with all primrose, the flowers open fully in late evening and then are closed by noon the following day. Each plant has a life cycle of two years so it blooms profusely during its flowering cycle in order to ensure reproducing its own kind. As a dense colony it becomes a refuge for quail and other small ground nesting songbirds.

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