Page authors: Don Knoke, David Giblin
Epilobium ciliatum
ciliate willowherb, Watson's willowherb

Distribution: Widely distributed on both sides of the Cascades crest in Washington. Alaska to California, east across most of North America to the Atlantic Coast.

Habitat: Moist soil from lowlands to middle elevations in the mountains.

Flowers: June-August

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Perennial from spreading rhizomes that produce rosettes of leaves; stems 3-10 dm. tall, simple below and freely-branched above, puberulent, glandular above.


Leaves opposite, short-petiolate, narrowly lanceolate to ovate-lanceolate, 3-7 cm. long, serrulate.


Inflorescence of racemes terminal on the branches; sepals 4, 2-5 mm. long, purplish; petals 3-10 mm. long, notched, white or cream to deep purplish-red; stamens 8; stigma entire or shallowly 4-lobed; ovary inferior, 4-celled.


Capsule 4-8 cm. long, linear; seeds with a tuft of white hairs on the tip.

Accepted Name:
Epilobium ciliatum Raf.
Publication: Med. Repos. New York II. v. 361. 1808.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Epilobium adenocaulon Hausskn.
Epilobium adenocaulon Hausskn. var. holosericeum (Trel.) Munz
Epilobium adenocaulon Hausskn. var. parishii (Trel.) Munz
Epilobium brevistylum Barbey var. ursinum (Parish ex Trel.) Jeps.
Epilobium ciliatum Raf. ssp. ciliatum [JPM2]
Epilobium ciliatum Raf. ssp. watsonii (Barbey) Hoch & P.H. Raven [JPM2]
Epilobium glandulosum Lehm. var. macounii (Trel.) C.L. Hitchc. [HC]
Epilobium watsonii Barbey [HC]
Epilobium watsonii Barbey var. parishii (Trel.) C.L. Hitchc. [HC]
Epilobium watsonii Barbey var. watsonii [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Epilobium ciliatum in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Epilobium ciliatum checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Epilobium ciliatum information.

E-Flora BC: Epilobium ciliatum atlas page.

CalPhotos: Epilobium ciliatum photos.

USDA Plants: Epilobium ciliatum information.

48 photographs:
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