Heimia salicifolia

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Heimia redirects here. For the brachiopod genus, see Heimia (brachiopod).
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Class: Magnoliopsida
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Order: Myrtales
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Family: Lythraceae
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Genus: Heimia
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Type Species
Heimia myrtifolia

Heimia salicifolia


Sinicuichi (Heimia), also known as sun opener or shrubby yellowcrest, is a genus of two or three species of shrubs in the family Lythraceae, native to the Americas, from northern Argentina north to the southernmost United States (southern Texas). The leaves are 2-5 cm long and 1 cm broad, entire, and variably arranged alternate, opposite or whorled on the stems.



  • Heimia myrtifolia is a shrub growing to 1 m tall. The yellow flowers are 5 petaled and 1 cm in diameter. The leaves are approximately 5 mm wide by 2-3 cm long.
  • Heimia salicifolia is a shrub growing to 3 m tall. The yellow flowers are 5 petaled and 2-3 cm in diameter. The leaves are approximately 1 cm wide and 3-5 cm long.

Secondary metabolites

Both Heimia species contain the following secondary metabolites:

History & Uses

Heimia myrtifolia and Heimia salicifolia are psychoactive[1] and can produce auditory hallucinations.[2]


File:Heimia Salicifolia Seeds.jpg
Seeds of H. salicifolia

The species make attractive ornamental plants, flowering in late summer. Although only growing as a shrub in subtropical climates, it can also be grown as a herbaceous perennial in colder areas where the above-ground growth is killed by winter cold.

The plants produce very many tiny seeds which are easily cultivated. The seeds should be sown thinly across the top of fine, packed soil. Both species perfer well-drained soil with a good supply of water. The seedlings should be watered by a fine mist or with bottom watering to avoid washing them off to the side of the pot. They should be kept out of intense sunlight until they form the first real leaves. It may be necessary to spread the seedlings out in their initial pots to avoid over-crowding. The seedlings should be moved to at least an inch apart once they are large enough to handle. Be aware that small seedlings of this species often have relatively large root structures. A plant less than a quarter-inch tall may have roots up to two inches deep.[1]



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