evening primrose

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evening primrose, common name for the Onagraceae, a family of plants of worldwide distribution, most species of which grow as herbs in the temperate New World, and specifically for members of the genus Oenothera. Species of Oenothera,Epilobium, and Godetia, among others, are native to America; some are cultivated. Evening primroses (species of Oenothera and some other similar species) range from North America to Patagonia. Most are yellow, evening-flowering annuals or biennials. The common evening primrose (O. biennis) is naturalized in the Old World, where the roots are sometimes used for food. The hybrid O. lamarckiana was used by Hugo de Vries in formulating his mutation theory of heredity. Godetia, abundant in California, includes farewell-to-spring, or summer's-darling (G. amoena). The branching, bushy great willow herb (E. angustifolium) is a widespread fireweed and a good bee plant. Most species of the genus Fuchsia are tropical American shrubs cultivated elsewhere as ornamentals for their pendulous, brilliant red to purple and white flowers. Most garden fuchsias are hybrids. The evening primrose family is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Myrtales.

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evening primrose Oenothera biennis, the oil from the seeds is a rich source of γ‐linolenic acid, which may account for 8% of total fatty acids. It is used as a dietary supplement and may have beneficial effects in a number of conditions.

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evening primrose Any of various plants of the genus Oenothera, many of which are native to w North America. They have yellow, pink or white flowers that open in the evening. Height: 1.8m (5.3ft). Family Onagraceae.

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evening primrose See OENOTHERA.