PLANT PROFILE

 

NAME: Evening Primrose

LATIN NAME / FAMILY:  Oenothera biennis / Onagraceae

OTHER COMMON NAME(S):  Sun Drop

CONDITIONS: sun
 

PARTS:

EDIBLE cid:image001.jpg@01D3EC3E.A305A520

TASTE

RAW/COOK

SEASON

All

 

 

 

 

Shoots

cid:image001.jpg@01D3EC3E.A305A520

slimy/pepper

RAW/COOK

Spring

Leaves

       

Stalk/Stem

cid:image001.jpg@01D3EC3E.A305A520

 

PEEL/RAW/COOK

Summer

Buds

       

Flowers

sweet

RAW/COOK

Summer

Fruits

 

 

 

 

Pods

cid:image001.jpg@01D3EC3E.A305A520

 

COOK

Summer

Seeds

 

 

 

 

Nuts

 

 

 

 

Roots

sweet/peppery

COOK

Fall/earlySpring

Bark

 

 

 

 

 

PORTION: small

 

COMMENT: Biennial - two year plant. Root of first year plant – taste resembles salsify or parsnips. Stalk of second year. Flowers - used in salads or as a garnish. Caution: eat shoots sparingly. (1) Stalk – second year (2)

 

CAUTION: “Lowers the threshold for epileptic fits (avoid). Caution if on anticoagulants. Combining with phenothiazines (allopathic medication) can trigger seizures. Adverse effects: may cause headaches and nausea on an empty stomach. Diarrhoea with high doses. Seizures in schizophrenic patients on phenothiazines (allergy antihistamines).”(1)

 

NUTRITION/MEDICINAL:  Anticholesterolemic;  Antipruritic;  Astringent;  Hypotensive;  Miscellany;  Sedative.(1) The seed contains 28% of a drying oil. It is edible and a very good source of gamma-linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid that is not found in many plant sources and has numerous vital functions in the body. The seed, however, is very small and difficult to harvest, it has to be done by hand. Overall yields are low, making the oil very expensive to produce.(1)

·        https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-1006/evening-primrose-oil

·        https://draxe.com/evening-primrose-oil

 

LOOK-A-LIKES:  

 

POISONOUS LOOK-A-LIKES: 

 

OTHER USES: “Cosmetic;  Dye;  Miscellany;  Oil. The oil from the seed is added to skin preparations and cosmetics. It is often combined with vitamin E to prevent oxidation. A yellow dye is obtained from the flowers. A finely ground powder made from the flowering stems is used cosmetically in face-masks to counteract reddened skins.”(1)

 

SOURCE LINKS (may include nutritional and medicinal info, plus other uses):

  1. https://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Oenothera+biennis
  2. http://www.eattheweeds.com/oenothera-biennis-foraging-standby-2  
  3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oenothera_biennis
  4. http://www.foragingtexas.com/2011/12/cutleaf-evening-primrose.html (good photos)
  5. http://www.ediblewildfood.com/evening-primrose.aspx (good photos)
  6. https://plighttofreedom.com/common-evening-primrose (many more cautions than the other websites)