|Gaura lindheimeri 'Whirling Butterflies'|
(Engelm. & A.Gray) W.L.Wagner & Hoch
The perennial plant is native to southern Louisiana and Texas. The specific epithet is after Ferdinand Jacob Lindheimer, a German-born botanist who collected extensively in Texas for Harvard University professor Asa Gray.
Oenothera lindheimeri is a perennial herbaceous plant growing to 50–150 cm tall, with densely clustered branched stems growing from an underground rhizome. The leaves are finely hairy, lanceolate, 1–9 cm long and 1–13 mm broad, with a coarsely toothed margin.
The flowers are produced on a 10–80 cm long inflorescence; they are pink or white, 2–3 cm diameter, with four petals 10–15 mm long and long hairlike stamens, and are produced from the beginning of spring until the first frost.
Oenothera lindheimeri is commonly grown as an ornamental plant. It is used in either garden beds or pots for accent colour and a delicate texture. It grows best in full sun and can survive lengthy periods of drought.
Several cultivars have been selected for varying flower color, from nearly pure white in 'Whirling Butterflies' to darker pink in 'Cherry Brandy' and 'Siskiyou Pink'. In some, the petals are white at dawn then turning pink before falling off at dusk.
Although a perennial rated USDA Zone 5(6)-9 for hardiness it may not overwinter reliably, and is often treated as an annual outside its native areas. In colder climates a heavy winter mulch is necessary.
- ITIS Standard Report Page: Oenothera lindheimeri . accessed 8.1.2013
- Updated for ITIS by the Flora of North America Expertise Network, in connection with an update for USDA PLANTS (2007-2010)
- "Gaura lindheimeri". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 10 January 2018.
- USDA Plants Profile: Gaura lindheimeri
- Munz, P. A. (1938). Studies in Onagraceae XI. A Revision of the Genus Gaura. Bull. Torrey Bot. Club 65: 105-122, 211-228.
- Huxley, A., ed. (1992). New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. Macmillan ISBN 0-333-47494-5.
- "Gaura lindheimeri AGM". Royal Horticultural Society. Retrieved 27 July 2013.
- "AGM Plants - Ornamental" (PDF). Royal Horticultural Society. July 2017. p. 39. Retrieved 27 February 2018.
- Gledhill, David (2008). "The Names of Plants". Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521866453 (hardback), ISBN 9780521685535 (paperback). pp 175, 238
- Onagraceae of North America Update, database (version 2011)
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