PlantsSenna→Wild Senna (Senna marilandica)

Common names:
Give a thumbs up Wild Senna
Give a thumbs up American Senna
Give a thumbs up Southern Wild Senna
Give a thumbs up Maryland Wild Senna

Botanical names:
Senna marilandica Accepted
Cassia marilandica Synonym

General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Full Sun to Partial Shade
Partial or Dappled Shade
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 3 -40 °C (-40 °F) to -37.2 °C (-35)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 9b
Plant Height: 24 - 60 inches
Plant Spread: 12 - 24 inches
Fruit: Showy
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Late summer or early fall
Dynamic Accumulator: Nitrogen fixer
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Resistances: Drought tolerant
Pollinators: Moths and Butterflies


This plant is tagged in:

Posted by mmolyson (Lilburn, GA - Zone 7b) on Jun 18, 2020 7:50 PM

Southern Wild Senna is a host plant for several species of sulphur caterpillars: Sleepy Orange, Tailed Orange, Little Yellow Sulphur, Cloudless Sulphur, and Orange-Barred Sulphur. You can check with your state butterfly association to see which ones are native to your area.

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Posted by Chillybean (Iowa - Zone 5a) on Aug 5, 2015 10:22 AM

I got two dormant bare roots of these this spring after wanting the plant for so long. They were planted on the south side of our house. I was concerned early on because they were just not popping out of the ground. It seemed to take nearly a month, but every time I checked on them afterwards, there was consistently new growth. In July, the plants have beautifully flowered. I look forward to seeing those interesting seed pods later this year. When it comes to natives they have free reign and in fact I've been hacking away at the daylilies to give these beauties more space to roam.

I was giving friends a garden tour in late May. One of the ladies works in the medical profession. She asked, "Laxative plant?" when I pointed to the Wild Senna. HA! The dried leaves are used today in modern medicine for that very purpose.

This plant is native to much of the eastern United States, going west into Nebraska and down to Texas. It is a member of the legume family. The seed pods look much like peas.

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Plant Events from our members
chelle On January 30, 2015 Seeds sown

Plant moist, sun. Perhaps along the lakeshore or the south-facing drive alongside the woods. Tall!
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Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Wild Senna in the SE Pennsylvania area by MissyPenny Jul 26, 2015 11:12 AM 0
Tree identification by NovemberJamie Oct 19, 2018 6:12 AM 1
Senna bicapsularis? by scvirginia Jul 3, 2020 4:02 PM 8
Senna marilandica - when does it break dormancy? by memays Apr 13, 2018 7:08 AM 3
Can you identify this flower? by kableem Nov 9, 2017 1:14 PM 6
Need ID by gardenglassgems Jul 13, 2017 9:23 AM 13
Senna/Cassia??? Varietal ID needed please * by flaflwrgrl Nov 6, 2016 12:58 PM 19
Curious of the name of this plant by Britbolt Sep 10, 2016 12:15 AM 11
June 2016 Butterflies, Moths & Larva by mellielong Jul 1, 2016 10:15 AM 329
Left overs free to good home by poisondartfrog Feb 20, 2016 3:23 PM 8
Have seeds for postage or trade by poisondartfrog Feb 9, 2015 8:46 AM 4

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