Silene csereii Baumg.

Smooth Catchfly

Silene csereii plant

Family - Caryophyllaceae

Stem - Ascending to erect, to 75 cm, glabrous and usually strongly glaucous.

Silene_csereii_stemStem and leaves.

Leaves - Basal rosette present but beginning to wither at flowering. Cauline leaves opposite, sessile and strongly clasping, simple, entire, thickened and somewhat succulent, glabrous, glaucous.


Inflorescence - Slender, elongated, terminal panicles.


Calyx - To 1 cm long, faintly nerved, somewhat inflated, ellipsoid, glabrous, glaucous.

Silene_csereii_calyxCalyx and styles.

Flower - Flowers perfect. Petals 5, to 1.5 cm long, deeply cleft, white. Stamens 10. Styles 3.

Silene_csereii_corollaCorolla, 7:30 a.m.

Silene_csereii_corolla2Corollas, 11:30 a.m.

Flowering - May - September.

Habitat -

Origin - Native to Europe.

Other info. - This species is easily recognized by the strong glaucousness of all parts of the plant, its thickened, succulent leaves, and white flowers. As is common with members of this genus, the flowers are fully open only in the early morning, closing by noon, especially on sunny days. The plant seems partial to barren mine tailings, surviving in this harsh environment which supports little else.

Photographs taken at St. Joe State Park, St. Francois County, MO, 6-2-2013, and at Missouri Mines State Historic Site, St. Francois County, MO, 5-17-2018 (SRTurner).