Wild Four O'Clock, Heartleaf Four O'Clock, Nightblooming Four O'Clock

Mirabilis nyctaginea

Family: Nyctaginaceae (nyk-taj-i-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Mirabilis (mih-RAB-ih-liss) (Info)
Species: nyctaginea (nyk-ta-JEE-nee-uh) (Info)
Synonym:Allionia nyctaginea
Synonym:Mirabilis collina
Synonym:Oxybaphus nyctagineus



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Flowers are fragrant

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:


Fuchsia (Red-Purple)

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall



Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Barbourville, Kentucky

Bay City, Michigan

Erie, Michigan

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Cole Camp, Missouri

Columbia, Missouri

Columbia, South Carolina

Austin, Texas

Hondo, Texas

Mcallen, Texas

San Antonio, Texas

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 6, 2016, Chillybean from (Zone 5a) wrote:

The children discovered this delightful plant this last weekend and brought some to me. I had never seen it before, but on a walk discovered a whole lot of this at the edge of the gravel road. A glorious showing!

It is native to most of the contiguous United States and grows best in waste places, like where the counties incessantly grade the gravel roads, or along railroad tracks. Though the county has to maintain the roads, it does look as if they are letting the milkweed come up along the edges, which allows this Four O'Clock and other native plants to grow when they could not do so before. We are surrounded by a monoculture desert of corn, beans, overgrazed pasture; to see natives allowed to grow wild is so refreshing!

It is said the seeds are easy to ... read more


On Jul 29, 2003, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Native to North America, this hardy perennial is a pest to farmers, as it disperses viable seed each year, as well as having a hardy, persistant tap root.

Its heart-shaped leaves are reminiscent of those of Syringa (lilac) shrubs; hence one of its common names.