Page author: David Giblin
Oenothera curtiflora
small-flowered gaura, velvet weed, velvetweed

Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in Washington; widely distributed throughout North America.

Habitat: Open, sandy, rocky, often disturbed places.

Flowers: June-September

Origin: Introduced

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Annual from a taproot, the stem single, simple below and branched above, 0.2-2 m. tall, puberulent, but also with soft, spreading hairs 2 mm. long.


Leaves alternate, the basal leaves spatulate, the lower cauline leaves oblong, the others oblong-lanceolate to lanceolate, 4-15 cm. long, entire to wavy-dentate, gradually reduced upward to very small, linear floral bracts.


Inflorescence of many-flowered spikes, 1-3 dm. long; calyx tube very slender, 2-3 mm. long, with 4 distinct, reflexed lobes 2-3 mm. long; petals 4, short-clawed, pinkish, 2 mm. long; stamens 8, filaments without basal scales; ovary inferior, 4-celled.


Fruit hardened, 6-10 mm. long, spindle-shaped, glabrous, 4-angled by not winged.

Accepted Name:
Oenothera curtiflora W.L. Wagner & Hoch

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Gaura mollis James
Gaura parviflora Douglas ex Lehm. [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Oenothera curtiflora in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Oenothera curtiflora checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Oenothera curtiflora atlas page.

CalPhotos: Oenothera curtiflora photos.

USDA Plants: Oenothera curtiflora information.

23 photographs:
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