Ludwigia alternifolia Seed Box
Ohio Native Plant Natural Range
Cultivation Information Seed Box
Height - 1 to 3 feet - My first year plants which flowered were only 1 ft tall. In their second season they were closer to 3 ft.
Flower Color - Yellow - four petals Blooms - May to July - By August the flowers were past their prime - individual flowers lasted a few days, fall off, as others open
Sun - Full
Hardy Zone - 4 to 8
Soil - moist to wet/rich humus
Family – Onagraceae - Evening Primrose
Seed Dispersal – With 200 to 2,000 seeds per capsule nature has certainly improved the odds of a successful local Seedbox population. Short lived Perennial - This remains to be seen as we have only been raising Seedbox for one season. Even if this is the case, considering the number of seeds per capsule the odds of viable seed look good! 2021 - In the summer of 2020 I planted several young Seedbox plants in a moist, sunny location, a small dogwood bush provides protection from the hot afternoon sun. I have so many questions about this little darling. Does it spread easily? Can it hold its own against its neighbor a robust patch of Golden Ragwort? Does it fill in and become bushier with time? Spring of 2021 will reveal the answers to my questions.
Propagation Notes Seed Box
Wildlife Significance Seed Box
Pollen & Nectar consumed by - Bruchid Beetle - Acanthoscelides alboscutellatus some pollination may occur.
Stems & leaves - Meals for muskrats. This is not first hand knowledge as muskrats have never visited our backyard
Deer - Research indicates that deer may browse Ludwigia alternifolia. I would love to know if anyone has noticed this or not.
Seedox Solitary Host Plant - For Bruchid Beetle - Acanthoscelides alboscutellatus. Eggs are laid on the outside of drying capsule; larvae enter in the seed, mature into adult beetles who spend the winter protected by their cocoons. When spring arrives adults emerge from their cocoon greeted by a full course meal of Seedbox seeds. Once the seed has been consumed, strong and healthy beetles attempt to venture out from the safely and comfort of their winter home. Ah, but there is one tiny catch. The seed coat is strong and durable, the only way out is through the apical pore hole. Smaller beetles easily emerge; large ones are trapped and eventually die, keeping the population of this beetle species in check, rewarding those naturally petite. I bet those burly guys wish they knew some of Harry Houdini tricks!
For more details on this plant visit the Illinois Wildflower website.