Ten-petal Eveningstar
Mentzelia decapetala (Pursh) Urban & Gilg
Family: Loasaceae, Eveningstar
Genus: Mentzelia
Other names: tenpetal blazingstar
Nomenclature: decapetala = ten petalled
Nativity / Invasiveness: Montana native plant
No edibility data
No medicinal data

General: perennial from a deep taproot, rough with barbed, spine-like hairs. Stems usually single (occasionally 2-3), 30-100 cm tall, mostly simple below and branching above.

Leaves: alternate, fleshy, lanceolate, 4-15 cm long, sharply pinnatifid with wavy lobes. Lower leaves stalked, the upper stalkless and often more or less clasping.

Flowers: terminal at the ends of the branches, open in the evening, fragrant, with several leaflike, pinnatifid bracts at the base. Calyx 1-2 cm long at flowering, lengthening as the fruit matures, the 5 lobes 2-4 cm long, lanceolate, persistent on the capsule. Petals apparently 10, cream to pale yellow, about twice the length of the calyx lobes, the inner 5 staminodia narrower, petal-like. Stamens very numerous, the filaments about 3/4 the length of the petals. Style usually equaling the stamens, stigma 3-4 mm long, not lobed, with minute bumps on the 4-5 spiral angles. July-September.

Fruits: capsules, 3-4.5 cm long. Seeds many, borne horizontally, 3-3.5 mm long, dark grayish-brown, strongly flattened and thin-edged but not truly winged.


Dry, open slopes and roadsides, on the plains and into the lower mountains, in most parts of MT. Also from s. Alberta and the Dakotas to Mexico, mostly e. of the Rocky Mts.
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