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Plant Identification

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From: Joyce Roberts
Mansfield, IL
I have perennial flowerbeds and in the early years of establishment spread wildflower seeds. One of the plants that has consistently come back every year comes up in the early summer and grows into a small bush about 3 foot tall. In July it flowers with pink blooms that only open at night. The blooms are trumpet-shaped, and the hawk moths love it. I have been unable to find the plants in websites for sale. Would you have any idea the name of this plant? I can provide a picture since I have been lucky enough to capture a hawk moth with my digital camera...Thanks.

Extension Message
From: Douglas B. Gucker
Extension Educator, Local Food Systems and Small Farms
DeWitt/Macon/Piatt Unit
Joyce: Your flower appears to be a "Four O'Clock Flower". Martha Smith, U. of I. Ext. Hort. Educator, put me on the trail with the suggestion that it was Mirabilis jalapa. Mirabilis jalapa is a tropical plant and is an annual in our part of the world. However, I do believe that it is in the Four-o'clock Family (Nyctaginaceae) and there are several native Midwest species according to the Ohio State University ( Thank you for the beautiful picture of this flower and I am sorry that it took me so long to get an answer back to you.

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