Epilobium

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Related to Willow-herb: Epilobium, Chamerion angustifolium

Epilobium

 

(willow herb), a genus of plants of the family Onagraceae. They are perennial herbs with entire leaves. The flowers, which are regular or slightly irregular, are generally pink or purple and gathered in racemes. The perianth is fourmembered. There are eight stamens. The fruit is a long, narrow capsule. There are approximately 200 species, distributed in the nontropical regions throughout the world. In the USSR there are approximately 60 species. A widespread species is fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium), which grows along felled forests, burned forests, and forest edges. It is one of the most productive nectar plants. The leaves, which contain vitamin C and carotene, are suitable for salads; the young shoots and rhizomes are also edible. Before blossoming, Epilobium is readily eaten by cattle. Fireweed and closely related species have often been classified in a special genus, Chamaenerion.

References in periodicals archive ?
It was the war, too, that accounted for the rubble-filled bomb-sites with their delicate willow-herb fronds that meant you could see St Paul's Cathedral right across London, or so it seemed.
Rosebay Willow-herb (Chamaenerion angustifolium) may, to the untrained eye, look suspiciously like Purple Looses-trife (Lythrum salicaria), and two members of the Figwort family Scrophulariaceae--Yellow Lute (Odontites lutea) and Common Cow-wheat (Melampyrum pratense)--may also be easily confused by someone who is gingerly taking their first herb-hunting expedition in the fields.
They show (clockwise from top left): A comma butterfly; a painted lady butterfly; an elephant hawk-moth caterpillar; a willow-herb hawk-moth; a bee inside a passion flower; and a peacock butterfly.