Fringed Loosestrife - Lysimachia ciliata • (Primrose family - Primulaceae)

 

Fringed Loosestrife - Lysimachia ciliata • (Primrose family - Primulaceae) The erect stem, simple or branched, bears yellow flowers rising on stalks in the axils of opposite leaves. Note the nodding flowers (face downward), the fringed or slightly toothed petals and the broad paired leaves with fringed leafstalks. 1 - 4 ft. Swamps, wet thickets, shores. The generic name honors Lysimachus, a king of ancient Sicily, who, according to tradition, was being chased by a maddened bull and in desperation seized the plant and waved it before the bull, pacifying him.

 

 

He released the bull from its strife. The plant was fed to oxen by Colonial farmers in the belief that it pacified them and enabled them to work harmoniously together. The species name emphasizes the hairy leaf stalks of this wetland plant. Differs from Whorled Loosestrife in its habitat, bloom time and characteristic hairs on the leaf stalks.

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