The Q&A Archives: What is a Prarie Primrose

Question: A friend has a perennial that he calls a Prarie Primrose. Can you tell me what it is and where it will grow best?

Answer: One of the difficulties with using common names is that they vary from region to region, so one plant can be called many things, depending upon where you live. There is a plant called Desert Evening Primrose (Oenothera primiveris) that is hardy in your area, and may be what your friend has. Fragrant flowers are the plant's most valuable asset, followed by a prostrate habit. It grows in poor soil, with little water, and still performs well. The flowers are about 2 1/2 inches wide in a variety colors, including white, yellow, pink or rose. Hope this information helps!

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