Hesperis matronalis 

(hess-per-iss' maa-tro-nal' iss)

Common name: Dame's Rocket, Sweet Rocket

Family: Brassicaceae, Mustard

Height x width: 3-4' x 2'

Growth rate: moderate

Foliage: alternate, 2-4" long, lanceolate, finely toothed margins

Flowers: white or purple with 4 petals, in loose terminal racemes in late spring; sweetly fragrant especially on calm evening

Hardiness: zones 3-8, biennial

Soil: moist, wet tolerate, prefers pH 6-7.5

Light: part shade

Pests and Problems: none serious

Landscape habit, uses: naturalized in colonies, wet partly shaded woodlands, moist borders, fragrance

Other interest: native to Eurasia, it has escaped in the U.S. from gardens to become naturalized; from the Greek hesperos meaning evening, refering to when the flowers are most fragrant

Other culture: mother plants die after flowering but readily self seeds resulting in yearly blooming, if in border in may need covering after dead with annuals or large perennials

Propagation: seeds (most common), terminal cuttings or division


Although the species is all that is generally found and seen, the following may also be available.


'Alba Plena'--white, double


'Purpurea Plena'--purple, double

©Authored by Dr. Leonard Perry, Professor, University of Vermont as part of PSS123 course.

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