Lunaria annua L. - Honesty, Money Plant, Satin Flower

Lunaria annua plant

Family - Brassicaceae

Stems:

Lunaria annua stemMost apical portion of the stem.

Leaves:

Lunaria annua leaves

Inflorescence:

N/A

Flowers:

Lunaria annua flower

Lunaria annua calyxCalyx.

Lunaria annua fruitFruits.

Flowering - March - May.

Habitat - Waste ground, disturbed sites, woodland edges, old homesites. Also cultivated.

Origin - Native to Europe.

Other information - This attractive and widely cultivated species is rarely escaped in Alabama but will most likely expand its wild range with time. The plant can have purple or white flowers and is easy to identify becasue of its big circular fruits. As the plant matures, many of the cauline leaves become sub-opposite to opposite.
The valves of the fruit drop off when the fruit is old and leave the smooth (satiny) septum behind. These old fruits are common in dried flower arrangements.
The genus name Lunaria is derived from the Latin "lun (a)" meaning "moon" pertaining to the big round fruits of the plant.
The species epithet annua is from the Latin "annu" meaning "year". The plant is typically biennial, however.

Alabama Distribution:

Lunaria annua map

Photographs taken in Brown Summit, NC., 4-22-03.


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