What is commonly referred to as vinca, can be found as both an annual and perennial…but they are not the same plant. Let me explain:
Perennial vinca (sometimes called periwinkle or creeping myrtle) can be found in two basic forms: Vinca minor and Vinca major. Vinca major is slightly bigger, slightly less cold hardy and slightly less shade tolerant than vinca minor. There is also a herbaceous vinca, but we won’t get into that.
Annual vinca isn’t even vinca …and its not always an annual. When botanists first discovered it, they thought it looked similar to vinca and named it Vinca rosea. They later discovered that it behaves quite differently than vinca and changed its name to Catharanthus roseus. By that time it was too late and the name had already stuck.
- ♪♪ You say vinca, I say Catharanthus roseus ♪♪
- Lets talk about the Annuals.
- Now lets talk about Perennials.
- Major vs Minor (Is it little league season yet?)
- Learn About Vincas
- Environmental Studies
- Growing Annual Vinca From Seed: Gathering And Germinating Seeds Of Vinca
- How to Gather Vinca Seeds
- When to Plant Annual Vinca Seeds
- Is The Periwinkle Flower An Annual Or Perennial?
- Vinca Periwinkle Care
- What Colors Do Periwinkle Flowers Come In?
- What Kind Of Soil Do Vinca Flowers Need?
- Where Can The Periwinkle Flower Be Grown or Used?
- How To Grow Periwinkle From Seed
- What Pests, Disease or Problems Does The Periwinkle Face?
- Uses For Periwinkle Plant
- Summary Of Periwinkle Catharanthus Roseus
- Scientific name
- Common names
- Naturalised distribution (global)
- Introduced, naturalised or invasive in East Africa
- Reproduction and dispersal
- Economic and other uses
- Environmental and other impacts
- Vinca major L.
♪♪ You say vinca, I say Catharanthus roseus ♪♪
For practical purposes I’ll call these plants Annual Vinca and Perennial Vinca. This is all you’ll need to know when buying them at the store. Only overly educated plant geeks (like myself) will want to explain the name difference to you.
Lets talk about the Annuals.
White Annual Vinca
In India annual vinca are called Sadaphuli. The name means always flowering. These beauties will flower from early spring until late fall if the weather stays reasonably warm. Vinca flowers can range from white to shades of purple, pink and red. They are tidy little plants. No need to deadhead the spent blooms. This plant is self cleaning.
Pink Annual Vinca
Its foliage is dark green and leathery, with a shiny appearance. They look so good, you’d swear they are fake! Because each plant it compact and low growing (under 2 ft) they make great border plants. Annual vinca do really well in heat and drought. Although they don’t particularly like cool temperatures or moisture, they will grow nicely in most climates in the summertime. They prefer full sun, but they’ll do just fine in partial sun.
Annual vinca is a tropical/subtropical plant. In hot areas, they grow as a perennial. In warm areas they grow as a self seeding annual. In cooler areas, like here in NE Ohio, they will usually need to be planted each year.
Annual vinca is not terribly hard to grow from seed as long as you are careful with your moisture levels. Too much moisture in the soil can cause the seeds to rot or the seedlings to have fungal issues. (Something else helpful to know: They germinate in the dark.) Its pretty inexpensive to just buy the plant at a garden center. Around here, Walmart sells them in packs of 6 for under $2.00. Water them right after planting, then not again unless you see the leaves start to curl.
Now lets talk about Perennials.
The leaves on this perennial vinca vine retain their green color through out the winter.
Perennial vinca (called vinca major and minor) are trailing evergreen vines. They don’t climb like ivy, but spread low across the ground. Perennial vinca grows best in shady areas and prefers cool, moist soil. Once they become established they will begin to spread. In some states they are on the invasive plant list. Vinca major is more aggressively invasive than vinca minor.
Although invasive, vinca minor is still sold as a common ornamental ground cover and is great for covering up unsightly objects- like tree stumps. Vinca minor, in most cases, will not choke out other plants growing in the area. They just fill in around them. Vinca major, being more aggressive, can take over other plants in your flower bed. There are variegated leaf varieties of vinca minor that are said to be easier to control.
I have vinca minor growing in a landscape bed between my driveway and front lawn. I planted a little and it spread quickly in areas where I wanted it to. I have not found it hard to contain. My normal lawn mowing routine has been enough to keep stray vines from trying to root into my grass. It added color to a shady area of my landscape and since it has filled in, I no longer need to mulch that bed.
Perennial vinca vines are great for hiding stumps!
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Vinca major has larger leaves and larger flowers than vinca minor. Both bloom early spring into late fall. Purplish-blue flowers are most common, although there are some cultivators that produce white and red flowers. The blooms on vinca minor are relatively small- they measure about an inch across. Vinca major boasts blooms that are double that size.
This violet-blue flower is typical of common vinca minor.
Perennial vinca can be grown from seed and is easily grown from cuttings. Perennial vinca have 2 types of stems: flowering and rooting. Simply select a vine that does not have a flower and root it as a softwood cutting.
Major vs Minor (Is it little league season yet?)
- smaller leaves and flowers
- thrives in shade
- perennial evergreen
- less invasive
- grow to about 1 ft and are more compact than vinca major
- larger leaves and flowers
- slightly less shade tolerant
- slightly less cold tolerant
- more invasive
- grow to about 2 ft high
Vinca flowers are a low maintenance way to add color to your garden and landscapes, but there are big differences between the annual vinca and perennial vinca. Let’s recap.
- Thrives in hot, dry temperatures
- Full sun
- Self seeding annual in warm climates
- Neat, compact border plant
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- Cool, moist soil
- Great for shady areas
- Evergreen vine
- Used as spreading ground cover
- Can be invasive
Learn About Vincas
Alternaria Leaf Spot: Small, round reddish brown spots with white to grey centers form on the upper surface of the leaves and along the midrib. The lesions may encircle the stems and cause wilt. This disease is worse in warm, wet or very humid weather. Burpee Recommends: Avoid getting water on the foliage. Remove infected plant parts and do not work around wet plants. Provide plenty of air circulation. Contact your Cooperative Extension Service for fungicide recommendations.
Botrytis: This fungus causes a grey mold on flowers, leaves, stems and buds. It thrives in cool wet weather conditions. Burpee Recommends: Remove affected plant parts, avoid watering at night and getting water on the plant when watering. Make sure plants have good air circulation. Contact your Cooperative Extension Service for fungicide recommendations.
Root Rots: A number of pathogens cause root rots of seedlings as well as mature roots. Burpee Recommends: Practice crop rotation and do not plant related crops in the same area for several years. Pull up and discard infected plants. Make sure your soil has excellent drainage. Contact your Cooperative Extension Service for recommendations.
Virus (Various causes): The most characteristic sign of virus is tight and dark green mottling of the leaves. Young leaves may be bunched. Young plants may have a yellowish tone and become stunted. Burpee Recommends: This disease is readily spread by handling. Destroy diseased plants and the plants on either side.
Common Pest and Cultural Problems
Aphids: Greenish, red, black or peach colored sucking insects can spread disease as they feed on the undersides of leaves. They leave a sticky residue on foliage that attracts ants. Burpee Recommends: Introduce or attract natural predators into your garden such as lady beetles and wasps which feed on aphids. You can also wash them off with a strong spray, or use an insecticidal soap.
Scale: Small bugs look like brown, black, gray to white bumps on the stems of plants. Scale may not have any apparent legs and may not move. Scales have a sucking mouth part. Scale may produce honeydew so leaves and stems may be sticky. Scale can weaken the plant causing it to grow very slowly and may wilt at the middle of the day. Burpee Recommends: Completely spray the stems with Insecticidal soap. For a severe infestation contact your local County Extension Service for recommendation for your area.
Spider Mites: These tiny spider-like pests are about the size of a grain of pepper. They may be red, black, brown or yellow. They suck on the plant juices removing chlorophyll and injecting toxins which cause white dots on the foliage. There is often webbing visible on the plant. They cause the foliage to turn yellow and become dry and stippled. They multiply quickly and thrive in dry conditions. Burpee Recommends: Spider mites may be controlled with a forceful spray every other day. Try hot pepper wax or insecticidal soap. Check with your Cooperative Extension Service for miticide recommendations.
Vine Weevil: This insect cuts irregular notches in leaf margins and grubs feed on plant roots, sometimes causing the death of the plant. Adults are approximately 5/16 inch long, dull black with dirty yellow marking on the wing cases. The grubs are c-shaped, 3/8 inches long, with light brown heads. Burpee Recommends: Handpick adults at night, shake the plants over newspaper to dislodge them. Check under pots where they hide during the day. Check with your Cooperative Extension Service for pesticide recommendations.
Whitefly: These are small white flying insects that often rise up in a cloud when plants are disturbed or brushed against. Burpee Recommends: They are difficult to control without chemicals. Try hot pepper wax or insecticidal soap. Check with your Cooperative Extension Service for pesticide recommendations.
Leaf: The leaves of the Periwinkle are simple, opposite, elliptic, and have entire margins.
Flower: The flowers of the plant are normally a light blue, but can vary from white to pink to red-violet. It has five petals which unite into a tube.
Shape: The plant is actually a very short trailing shrub with a long system of roots, growing up to 10 feet across.
The Periwinkle is native to Europe and was brought to North America in the 1700’s as a decorative plant. Its seeds quickly escaped gardens and the plant spread across the continent. The plant prefers shady woodlands and savannas. It is considered an invasive weed in most states.
Relationship with other species
Non-human: If unchecked, Periwinkle is capable of aggressively dominating landscapes, preventing the growth of similar low-lying plants. On the other hand, the plant is popularly used as ground cover because it retains the soil’s moisture and prevents erosion. Animals such as deer and rabbits tend to avoid the leaves. Rather, insects such as aphids, mites, and weevils will eat them.
Humans: In gardens, this is a pretty blue flower that can keep soil healthy. In natural environments, it is considered a large threat to other plant species. There is a divide between botanists on how V. minor should be regulated.
Other interesting facts
The famous Crayola color takes its name from this flower.
Page drafted by Adaobi Okoli
Growing Annual Vinca From Seed: Gathering And Germinating Seeds Of Vinca
Also known as rose periwinkle or Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus), annual vinca is a versatile little stunner with shiny green foliage and blooms of pink, white, rose, red, salmon or purple. Although this plant isn’t frost-hardy, you can grow it as a perennial if you live in USDA plant hardiness zones 9 and above. Collecting vinca seeds from mature plants isn’t difficult, but growing annual vinca from seed is a little trickier. Read on to learn how.
How to Gather Vinca Seeds
When collecting vinca seeds, look for long, narrow, green seedpods hidden on the stems beneath blooming flowers. Snip or pinch the pods when the petals drop from the blooms and the pods are turning from yellow to brown. Watch the plant carefully. If you wait too long, the pods will split and you’ll lose the seeds.
Drop the pods into a paper sack and place them in a warm, dry spot. Shake the bag every day or two until the pods are completely dry. You can also drop the pods into a shallow pan and put the pan in a sunny (non-windy) location until the pods are completely dry.
Once the pods are completely dry, open them carefully and remove the tiny black seeds. Place the seeds in a paper envelope and store them in a cool, dry, well-ventilated location until planting time. Freshly harvested seeds usually don’t do well because germinating vinca seeds require a period of dormancy.
When to Plant Annual Vinca Seeds
Plant vinca seeds indoors three to four months before the last frost of the season. Cover the seeds lightly with soil, then lay a damp newspaper over the tray because germinating seeds of vinca require total darkness. Place the seeds where temperatures are around 80 F. (27 C.).
Check the tray daily and remove the newspaper as soon as seedlings emerge – generally two to nine days. At this point, move the seedlings into bright sunlight and room temperature is at least 75 F. (24 C.).
The periwinkle plant (Vinca flower) – Catharanthus roseus or lochnera rosea, also known as rosy periwinkles, is a lovely small plant that grows outside very well but also finds itself at home in a summer window.
The plant Catharanthus roseus is sometimes called Vinca minor and Vinca periwinkle. It’s also commonly called the Madagascar Periwinkle.
Here is the primary reason to use the correct botanical names of plants. Vinca minor is also known as the common periwinkle is a different plant and is considered an invasive species in:
- South Carolina
Periwinkle vinca minor carries the common names:
- Lesser periwinkle
- Periwinkle myrtle
- Creeping periwinkle
- Dwarf periwinkle
… serves as a ground cover plant where grass won’t grow.
On the other hand, Catharanthus roseus grows as an annual plant mainly used in sunny flower beds, pots and as a ground cover.
Both periwinkle vinca minor and vinca rosea are found in garden centers from early spring to late summer but have different uses.
This article focuses on periwinkle plant care, with its shiny green foliage and flowers of pink, red or white periwinkle which cover the plant all through the summer.
Is The Periwinkle Flower An Annual Or Perennial?
Normally, the vinca minor plant lasts only one year, however, that depends on where the periwinkle plant is growing.
In northern climates, it would be considered an annual that usually last for only one year.
However, in warmer climates, it can grow as a perennial. Indoors it makes an excellent windowsill plant.
It grows best in USDA hardiness zones 4 to 11.
Vinca Periwinkle Care
Vinca minor is a small upright grower and has a maximum height of about 8″-12″ inches tall. The leaves are very shiny and long, with a clear almost white center vein. I have seen plants stretch and grow taller than 8 inches when they did not have adequate light.
The Ralph Shugert periwinkle, under the vinca minor type, is an evergreen shrub that bears dark green leaves and violet-blue flowers.
Like most species, Ralph Shugert is drought tolerant, requires well-drained soil and enjoys full sun to partial shade. It can only grow up to 15 cm.
On the other hand, Vinca major or greater periwinkle is a bigger perennial species of family Apocynaceae.
Vinca minor plant grows up to 10″ inches tall (25 cm) and dense masses can pile up to 28″ inches wide (70 cm).
What Colors Do Periwinkle Flowers Come In?
The periwinkle flower comes in shades of pink, red or white and the flowers can be in several different shades and can either be plain or variegated.
What Kind Of Soil Do Vinca Flowers Need?
Periwinkles can be grown in the ground on in pots. No matter how they are planted they appreciate a well-drained soil. When planting in pots or containers a bagged potting soil will be fine.
If grown indoors on a windowsill, I would recommend a soil mix used to grow African violets.
This is because many potting soil mixes used outdoors may contain wood products and you could soon find yourself with a fungus gnat problem indoors.
Where Can The Periwinkle Flower Be Grown or Used?
Periwinkle plants are easy to grow and care for. Provide them a well-drained moist soil, plenty of bright light, warm temperatures 65° F and above and they will do wonderfully out on the patio or deck as potted plants.
Since the plant grows relatively low to the ground plants they make excellent additions as a ground cover or to container gardens in beds to add color below larger shrubs.
They also provide lots of easy color when grown in hanging baskets. Give plants lots of light with a little partial shade to protect them against the strong rays of the sun.
If plants become a little straggler, they can simply be cut back to make them bushier!
Plant periwinkles where they get good air, sun and drainage and there will be no keeping them from blooming.
You may also like –> Growing Trailing Vinca
How To Grow Periwinkle From Seed
Periwinkles are easy to grow from seed. This may be a better alternative than overwintering plants.
Where can you find periwinkle seeds? Like so many things – at Amazon!
You can sow seed at any time of the year but it is normal to sow seeds during the months of January through April. The seed is very, very light with 1 gram containing 700 to 800 seeds.
Cultivation usually is for 3 to 4 months and the seeds should germinate within the first 2 to 3 weeks at a temperature of 63 to 65°.
The seed should be sown in normal potting soil and covered with a thin layer of sand.
I like to mix the fine seed with builder sand – available at home improvement centers – when sowing to get an even distribution.
Keep the soil damp during this period. The total growing time from sewing to mature plant is about 3 to 4 months.
What Pests, Disease or Problems Does The Periwinkle Face?
During the summer months, plant lice aphids may attack. Usually, a good blast of water is one of the natural ways to get rid of aphids. Another is to apply organic insecticide neem oil sprays if needed but I have never needed to.
Lower Leaves Turing Yellow and Falling Off
When lower foliage turns yellow and fall off, it usually is the sign of too much water or the plant has been subjected to cold.
Back off the water or with it is cold related move the plant to a warmer position.
Leaves Droop and Fall
When leaves hang, droop and fall it normally is a periwinkle plant growing in a pot and has dried out too much. The best solution is to drop the whole pot into a bucket of Luke warm water for at least half an hour.
When the weather is warm, plants may need to be watered daily.
Related Reading: Is The Periwinkle Plant Poisonous?
Uses For Periwinkle Plant
Apart from functioning as a ground cover to areas where grass won’t grow, periwinkle also serves as a source of alkaloids for medicinal use. With a total of 86 alkaloids, the periwinkle plant extract covers a lot of benefits.
One of its products is vinpocetine, a synthetic derivative coming from the vincas alkaloid vincamine. This compound aids short-term memory and serves as an anti-aging agent.
Vincristine and vinblastine can treat various forms of cancer such as leukemia, child cancers, Hodgkin disease or Hodgkin lymphoma, and other types of lymphoma.
Summary Of Periwinkle Catharanthus Roseus
This native of Europe, India, and Madagascar is a fine plant to add color with minimal requirements. I prefer to grow the plant outdoors in the landscape as a ground cover or in containers, where color can be moved as needed.
Give the periwinkle plant a try… you won’t be disappointed.
- Name also: Dwarf Periwinkle, Common Periwinkle, Small Periwinkle, Myrtle, Creeping Myrtle
- Family: Dogbane Family – Apocynaceae
- Growing form: Perennial dwarf shrub.
- Height: 20–40 cm (8–15 in.). Stem limp, rooting, flowering branches usually ascending. Forming mat-like stands.
- Flower: Corolla regular (actinomorphic), funnel-shaped, blue–violet (sometimes white), 2.5–3 cm (1–1.2 in.) wide, fused, 5-lobed, lobes obliquely blunt. Sepals 5, glabrous. Stamens 5. Gynoecium fused, 2 carpels. Flowers solitary in axils.
- Leaves: Opposite, short-stalked, overwintering. Blade narrowly elliptic–lanceolate, round-shaped or wedge-shaped base, with entire margin, glabrous, shiny.
- Fruit: Elliptic follicle, 2 together. 3–5 rather big seeds in each follicle.
- Habitat: Ornamental, quite often an escape from cultivation, gardens, parks, urban woods, broadleaf woods, wasteland, roadsides.
- Flowering time: May–June.
Lesser periwinkle is a dwarf shrub, but at least some garden enthusiasts are of a mind to see it as a perennial. The species is one of the best evergreen ground covers that are able to grow in Finland. Many variants have been developed of this highly popular plant, including a white-flowered form. Lesser periwinkle thrives in shady places under trees and bushes. It often does well in the same place year after year, looking impressive despite requiring a lot of care, even though the garden might have gone wild and other species on the flower bed succumbed to the competition.
Periwinkles in the wild grow in and around leafy forests and are apt to escape in Finland too. Lesser periwinkle flowers early in the spring, but it is probably most noticeable in the winter when other plants have withered and its dark green shoots thread their way through the debris.
Name also: Bigleaf Periwinkle, Large Periwinkle, Blue Periwinkle
Small genus Periwinkle has around half a dozen species, most of which grow in southern Europe. Greater periwinkle, which is cultivated as a house-plant, grows casually in Finland too, close to habitation. The species cannot however survive the Finnish winter, so it stays outside for short periods only.
The genus also used to include Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus), which is a popular perennial in southern countries, and is sometimes grown in Finland as a house plant. Apart from its ornamental properties it has forged a reputation for its alkaloids, which have been used as an efficient treatment for leukaemia.
Other species from the same family
Catharanthus roseus (Madagascar Periwinkle)
Catharanthus roseus (L.) G. Don.
Ammocallis rosea (L.) Small; Lochnera rosea (L.) Reichb.; Vinca roseaL.
Catharanthus roseus is native and endemic to Madagascar.
Naturalised distribution (global)
Catharanthus roseus has been naturalised in practically all tropical countries.
Introduced, naturalised or invasive in East Africa
Catharanthus roseus is invasive in parts of Kenya and naturalised in parts of Uganda (A.B.R. Witt pers. obs.) and Tanzania (Henderson 2002). C. roseus is cultivated as an ornamental in most districts of Tanzania, including Iringa, Marangu, Mwanza, Ukiriguru, Amani, Dar es Salam; In Uganda, it is cultivated in Mengo, Karamoja; it is widespread in Kenya-Nairobi, Kiambu, Embu, Kisii, Taita Taveta, Kakamega.
Rocky outcrops and roadsides in dry savanna, urban open spaces and in cultivated areas.
Catharanthus roseus is a long-lived (perennial) sub-shrub or herb, usually erect, 30-100 cm high and at least somewhat woody at the base, sometimes sprawling. White latex is present.
Stems cylindrical (terete), longitudinally ridged or narrowly winged, green or dark red, pubescent at least when young. Leaves opposite, borne on short petioles, 2.5-9.0 cm long, usually elliptical to obovate (egg-shaped in outline but with the narrower end at the base), green with paler veins . The leaf tip is rounded to acute with a tiny point extending from the midrib. Stems and leaves usually with hairs (pubescent), sometimes hairless.
Flowers borne in leaf axils, either singly or paired on very short stalks (pedicels). Sepals 5, 2-6 mm long, narrow, usually with hairs (pubescent). Corolla with a long narrow tube and lobes that spread perpendicular to the tube and almost flat.; corolla tube greenish, usually at least 2.2 cm long, with the inside of the mouth often dark pink or sometimes yellow, pubescent inside the throat with rings of stiff hairs below the mouth and anthers; corolla lobes 5, pink to white or pinkish purple, 1.0-2.8 cm long, obovate. Anthers 5, attached to the inside of the corolla tube in the upper portion and concealed within it.
The fruit is a follicle, 2.0-4.7 cm long, with numerous small black seeds.
Reproduction and dispersal
Flowers of Catharanthus roseus are pollinated by butterflies and moths. This species is self-compatible, though self-pollination under normal conditions may be relatively uncommon. Seeds are dispersed by ants, wind and water.
Economic and other uses
Catharanthus roseus has anti-cancer effects and is traditionally used to treat diabetes, It is a popular ornamental plant in East Africa.
Environmental and other impacts
Catharanthus roseus is most commonly associated with coastal habitats (e.g. cliff faces, rocky ocean ledges and sand dunes) and other sites with sandy soils, but also grows in bushland and disturbed natural vegetation near urban areas. It is a common garden plant in East Africa; it frequently escapes to inhabit roadsides, abandoned quarries and farmland.
The precise management measures adopted for any plant invasion will depend upon factors such as the terrain, the cost and availability of labour, the severity of the infestation and the presence of other invasive species.
The best form of invasive species management is prevention. If prevention is no longer possible, it is best to treat the weed infestations when they are small to prevent them from establishing (early detection and rapid response). Controlling the weed before it seeds will reduce future problems. Control is generally best applied to the least infested areas before dense infestations are tackled. Consistent follow-up work is required for sustainable management.
The editors could not find any specific information on the management of this species.
Not listed as a noxious weed by the state or governments in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
Henderson, L. (2001). Alien weeds and invasive plants. A complete guide to declared weeds and invaders in South Africa. Plant Protection Research Institute Handbook No. 12, 300pp. PPR, ARC South Africa.
Henderson, L. (2002). Problem plants in Ngorongoro Conservation Area. Final Report to the NCAA.
Agnes Lusweti, National Museums of Kenya; Emily Wabuyele, National Museums of Kenya, Paul Ssegawa, Makerere University; John Mauremootoo, BioNET-INTERNATIONAL Secretariat – UK.
This fact sheet is adapted from The Environmental Weeds of Australia by Sheldon Navie and Steve Adkins, Centre for Biological Information Technology, University of Queensland. We recognise the support from the National Museums of Kenya, Tropical Pesticides Research Institute (TPRI) – Tanzania and Makerere University, Uganda. This activity was undertaken as part of the BioNET-EAFRINET UVIMA Project (Taxonomy for Development in East Africa).
BioNET-EAFRINET Regional Coordinator: [email protected]
Anther opening the anthers have narrow slits or furrows that run lengthwise along the anthers Calyx symmetry there are two or more ways to evenly divide the calyx (the calyx is radially symmetrical) Carpels fused the carpels are fused to one another Cleistogamous flowers there are no cleistogamous flowers on the plan Corolla palate no Epicalyx the flower does not have an epicalyx Epicalyx number of parts 0 Flower description the flower has a superior ovary, and lacks a hypanthium Flower petal color
- blue to purple
- pink to red
Flower reproductive parts the flower has both pollen- and seed-producing parts Flower symmetry there are two or more ways to evenly divide the flower (the flower is radially symmetrical) Flowers sunken into stem no Form of style the style is knob-like at the tip, and unbranched Fusion of sepals and petals the petals or the sepals are fused into a cup or tube Horns in hoods (Asclepias) NA Hypanthium the flower does not have a hypanthium Inflorescence one-sided the flowers are arrayed in a spiral around the inflorescence axis or branches, or occur singly, or in several ranks Inner tepals (Rumex) NA Nectar spur the flower has no nectar spurs Number of sepals, petals or tepals there are five petals, sepals, or tepals in the flower Number of styles 1 Ovary position the ovary is above the point of petal and/or sepal attachment Petal and sepal arrangement the flower includes two cycles of petal- or sepal-like structures Petal and sepal colors
- blue to purple
- pink to red
Petal appearance the petals are thin and delicate, and pigmented (colored other than green or brown) Petal folds or pleats the petals of the flower do not have folds or plaits Petal hairs (Viola) NA Petal number 5 Petal tips (Cuscuta) NA Reproductive system all the flowers have both carpels and stamens (synoecious) Scales inside corolla no Sepal and petal color the sepals are different from the petals Sepal appendages the sepals do not have appendages on them Sepal appendages (Oenothera) NA Sepal number 5 Stamen attachment
- the stamens are attached at or near the bases of the petals or tepals
- the stamens are attached at or near the bases of the petals or tepals
Stamen number 5 Stamen position relative to petals the stamens are lined up with the sepals Staminodes there are no staminodes on the flower Umbel flower reproductive parts NA Upper lip of bilabiate corolla NA