Eight O'clock Plant?

Discussion in 'Plants: Identification' started by Unregistered, Feb 6, 2005.

  1. My question is about a plant originally from my great grandfathers garden in northern Illinois. It is about 10-12 inches tall with long narrow leaves and a flower on the end of a long thin stem. Every night during the summer, the flowers would slowly open until fully bloomed. Within about 10 minutes the flowers shrivel and close. We have always called them 8 o'clocks, but I don't believe this is correct. Does anyone know anything about this type of plant?
     
  2. clovelan

    clovelan Member

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    My father had a bed of these plants in our back yard in Wayland, New York south of Rochester. He called them, 8 o'clocks. I remember six to eight people standing in the rain to watch them open. One night he had 103 blossoms. To the best of my memory they did not die until the sunlight hit them in the morning. The plant had leaves that looked like dandelion leaves. The flower was encapsulated in a sleeve, which slowly pulled down, when the time was right, the flower opened and looked like a pansy in shape. It was however very thin, almost transparent, and a very light yellow. If anybody out there has a source for these plants please let me know at clovelan@localnet.com. I do noit know the scientific name.
     
  3. dkg091065

    dkg091065 Active Member

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    Let me know if this picture helps, if this is the plant you are looking foe, I have seed left from my grandmothers garden.
    Don
     

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  4. Becki

    Becki Member

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    If the plant you are looking for is the same one as dkg091065 posted photos of, they are called "Four o'clocks" and readily available at any store that carries seeds..even Wal-Mart.

    Be forewarned..they form tubers and spread like crazy!
     
  5. wild-rose-43

    wild-rose-43 Active Member

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    I had Four O'clocks in the yard of one house we lived in. They do spread like wildfire but I think they're pretty. If you give them their own space you shouldn't have a problem. Mine got a good deal taller than 10-12 inches though. They were more on the range of 3-4 feet
     
  6. Becki

    Becki Member

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    Mine were also three to four feet high..they'd die back every winter and then come back strong every spring...also three or four feet wide (in West Texas)..

    I planted some here in Colorado for the first time just to see how they will do..


    B.
     
  7. robindonise

    robindonise Member

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    I have the same flowers and I have been all over the net trying to find what they are called. I was told they are called 9 o'clocks. Mine are bright yellow blooms. I would love to know what they are and they are different from 4 o'clocks because I have them also.
    I wish some one did know something about these. Thanks
     
  8. lighthouses4me

    lighthouses4me Member

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    I think the flowers you are talking about may be evening primroses. My grandmother had them as well. She called the eight-o-clocks. The plants did tend to be 2 to 4 feet in height.
     
  9. toutlan

    toutlan Active Member

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    definately 4 oclocks,i have many in my yard,all though this time of yaer the open just before dark,around 7:30 here.i have yellow,pink purple and pink and white.they are extremely fragrant,especislly the pink ones,smell alot like honeysuckle.almost every seed that drops will grow if you have any rain at all.they will completetly die back in cold,but will come back bigger every year.they must have been named 4 oclocks before daylight savings..lol.
     
  10. allibird

    allibird Member

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    i think these are what i have that i am trying to find out where to plant. the ones we saw last summer were planted on the east side of a house but i don't know if they need sun, shade, partial. anyway, we are located in northern indiana, if it is feasible i would share them with you next summer when i should have more
     
  11. toutlan

    toutlan Active Member

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    i have them growing on all sides of my house and in full shade to full sun, the partial shaded ones seem to do the best.just remember every seed thaat drops is likely to grow next yaer,they can be a pain
     
  12. allibird

    allibird Member

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    sorry to say, ours didn't make it. however the" base/leaf" of the ones we had was much wider and i don't know the technical name
     
  13. vicif

    vicif Member

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    the plant you are describing is also called a moon flower, because of the time of evening it starts to open. it is NOT A 4oclock, those are multi colored and have a completely different leaf. the 8 oclock does look like a very happy dandelion. i have several in my garden and i have shared them with neighbors. they are bountiful. it's a joy to go outside at dusk and watch them shiver and shake and OPEN. i have no idea what the correct botanical name is. but as i said i was first introduced to them as moon flowers, and they show no resemblance to the big white moon flowers.
     
  14. Jjci1477

    Jjci1477 Member

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    I have been looking for these forever, can you help me get some?
    Cheryl Whitman
     
  15. Eric La Fountaine

    Eric La Fountaine Rising Contributor UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years of Activity

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    This is a very old thread, but it seems the question was never resolved. I think the Plant in question is some type of Oenothera. These are usually yellow, but do come in other colours, pink at least. The fragile flowers open in the evening and can be quite pleasantly fragrant.
     
  16. Francine

    Francine New Member

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    Hello,
    The person who shared that the plant had leaves like a dandelion immediately helped me identify the plant they were speaking of:
    Oenothera triloba
    Stemless Evening Primrose
    I bought seeds from hardyplants.com
     
  17. greatlady2know

    greatlady2know New Member

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    I believe the plants most of you are referring to are called Eight O'clock Primrose. They do get to be 2-3 ft tall, leaves look like a dandelion when they first begin to come up. With day light savings time they don't bloom until closer to 9 however. The flowers are only yellow, as 4 or 5 o'clocks are many different colors and stay lower to the ground. It is almost magical to watch the blossom push it's way out of the "skin" that surrounds the blossom. There are only 4 petals on the flower as it quickly unfurls to lay open flat. By morning the blossoms do die. And yes, it is so surprising to see how quickly they open that I, too, have had people stand in my yard to watch them open in the evening. If you find some one with a plant, ask for some of the seeds, as they germinate the following year quite well. Enjoy!!
     

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