Senna Species, Wild Cassia, Wild Senna

Senna hebecarpa

Family: Fabaceae (fab-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Senna (SEN-nuh) (Info)
Species: hebecarpa (hee-be-KAR-puh) (Info)
Synonym:Cassia hebecarpa
Synonym:Cassia hebecarpa var. longipila



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

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

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Fayetteville, Arkansas

Glastonbury, Connecticut

Albion, Indiana

Logansport, Indiana

Council Bluffs, Iowa

Yale, Iowa

Halifax, Massachusetts

Sheffield, Massachusetts

Somerville, Massachusetts

Afton, Minnesota

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Saint Paul, Minnesota

Lincoln, Nebraska(2 reports)

Mount Laurel, New Jersey

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Coopersburg, Pennsylvania

Memphis, Tennessee

Austin, Texas

Jacksonville, Texas

Kalama, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 22, 2015, Chillybean from (Zone 5a) wrote:

I finally got two of these this spring. I was concerned early on because the bare roots were not coming out of dormancy. Maybe it was establishing underground, because now I have two beautiful flowering plants on the south side of the house. For the most part, my natives and beneficial aliens have free reign of the property, so I am not too concerned about spreading seedlings. About the only time I pull any is if they stray into the produce patches, but that hasn't been too much of a trouble.

I was giving some friends a garden tour late May and pointed out this plant. One of the ladies in the medical profession asked, "Laxative plant?" when I mentioned Wild Senna. Haha! Yes, that's what it was used for medicinally. She sees Senna on some patients' prescription lists... read more


On Mar 25, 2015, jbcampbe from Somerville, MA wrote:

I bought a small Wild Senna two years ago at Garden in the Woods, Massachusetts, and it has thriven here in Somerville, MA. The soil is partially reclaimed, "minimally maintained" (this is a guerrilla garden) land--much clay, gravel, rock--plus topsoil and compost that I've been adding slowly. The light is partial sun (shielded in the late afternoon). The Wild Senna, so far, has happily survived one year of bad flooding and one moderately cold winter. Am hopeful that it will have survived this year's heavy snowfall. It grows to slightly above six feet, with very full foliage and lovely golden blossoms. So far, no seedlings, but I've harvested the seeds and hope to plant them in other "minimally maintained" areas nearby (with some help and watering from me). The more seedlings the bett... read more


On Jul 7, 2014, stonehill26 from Glastonbury, CT (Zone 6a) wrote:

I planted Wild Senna 3 years ago in my garden. It grows to 5 feet he tall here in CT - My concern is that each year there are more and more seedlings that appear in the garden.. many of them so well rooted that they are difficult to weed out. The seedlings have also found their way throughout my 3/4 acre lot.
I pulled out the plants last fall and still have many seedlings creeping up! This is a very lovely plant but I believe it requires some caution!


On Oct 7, 2009, jegk from Minneapolis, MN wrote:

I bought this plant from a local nursery and planted it on a retaining wall terrace where it gets full sun, which I assumed would be ideal since it is a prairie species. It is, but this summer I discovered a seedling that planted itself in a shady location where I had placed some of the abundant seed capsules last fall when I cut the plant back late in the season. I have also found tiny seedlings growing near my garden shed where there is essentially no sun. It's a native species that appears very adaptable. I'll see how the plants in the shady sites do next year and let you know.


On Aug 16, 2009, SusanLouise from Lincoln, NE (Zone 5b) wrote:

What a great plant to add to a garden! The shape of the leaves are lovely, non-invasive and a true native. I planted 2 side by side for the Cloudless Sulphur Butterfly (one of my favorites!)...


On Jan 28, 2009, JonthanJ from Logansport, IN wrote:

When I noticed over the summer of 2008 that there were a dozen seedlings coming up through the grassy weeds within 20' of one that I had collected some years ago, on a south-facing clay loam hillside in one of my gardens, I got a bit antsy that it might be an invasive alien. It turns out that this is a native plant. Prairie Nursery suggests that it does well in clayey soils. It can be a chore to clean up the dead stems.


On Feb 3, 2006, srczak from Minneapolis, MN (Zone 4b) wrote:

I like the texture of the pinnate leaves; the flowers are showy enough, maybe not outstanding. Easy to grow in fairly sunny spot, tho withstands some shade and fairly drought tolerant. It's a nitrogen-fixing legume, so seed is easily harvested from pods after they mature and dry on the plant in late summer/fall.