About Beach Evening Primrose: Also known as Beach Suncups, this wildflower blooms all year on its native coasts of Oregon and California. It prefers to grow in the sand dunes just off the ocean; because of its extremely long taproot, it thrives even in drought conditions. Though this flower does not belong to the same family as the true primrose, it acquired this misleading name because of a strong resemblance to that species. One important difference between the two is the fact that Beach Evening Primroses bloom all day, rather than just at evening and through the night in the manner of true primroses. The genus name “Camissonia” honors the noted writer and botanist Adelbert von Chamisso.
Beach Evening Primrose Germination: In late fall or early spring, sow the seed on the surface of the soil and keep it lightly moist until germination. Transplant or thin seedlings to 20-24” apart. This plant grows best in full sun, coastal conditions, and sandy soil.
Growing Beach Evening Primrose Seeds: This plant tolerates drought very well, and only needs watering in the driest weather conditions. Unless they are growing in optimum conditions, plants will last from 2-3 years. Since these primroses self-seed, volunteer seedlings will preserve the planting. Because of its low growth and spreading branches, this plant provides erosion control as well as being an excellent addition to rock gardens or hanging baskets. Bees and butterflies flock to this plant.
Harvesting Beach Evening Primrose: For fresh flowers, cut the stems just when they have begun to bloom. Place them in water immediately.
Saving Beach Evening Primrose Seeds: Elongated pods will form on the stems, and turn from green to red to brown. When ripe, the pods will split; to prevent loss, they should be removed before this occurs. As soon as the seed inside the pods matures to a dark brown, remove the pods and spread them out to dry away from direct sunlight. Thresh the dried pods to remove the seed. Store the seed in a cool, dry place.
Detailed Beach Evening Primrose Info: Origin: US Native Wildflower Other Common Names: Beach Suncup Duration: Perennial Bloom Time: Spring-Summer Height: 6-8 inches Spacing: 20-24 inches Light: Full Sun Soil Moisture: Dry USDA Zone: 8a-10 Seeds Per Oz: 154,000 Produces a rosette of slightly hairy, spoon-shaped leaves and long, sprawling branches with tiny oval, grayish green leaves and bright yellow 1” flowers with four petals.