candle anemone

(Anemone cylindrica)

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not listed


N5? - Secure

SNR - Unranked


not listed

candle anemone
Photo by Bill Reynolds

Candle anemone is an erect perennial forb rising from a short, ascending to vertical caudex. It is usually 12 to 27 tall but can reach up to 40 in height in favorable conditions.

A whorl of usually 5 to 10 basal leaves rises from the ground at the top of the caudex. Basal leaves are on 3½ to 8¼ long leaf stalks (petioles). The leaf blades are broadly inversely egg-shaped in outline and are divided into three leaflets. The terminal leaflet is unstalked, broadly diamond-shaped or inversely lance-shaped in outline, 1¼ to 2 long, and 1½ to 4 wide. It is narrowly wedge-shaped at the base and cut at the tip into 3 lobes. The lobes may be shallow or deep, and often have secondary lobes. The ultimate lobes are sharply pointed. The surfaces are covered with straight, stiff, appressed hairs, more so on the lower surface. The margins are toothed with sharp or rounded teeth. The lateral leaflets are similar but sometimes deeply divided into 2 segments, causing the leaf blade to appear at first inspection to be divided into 4 or 5 segments.

A single flowering stem rises from the caudex at the base of the whorl of leaves. At the top of the stem there is a whorl of 3 leaf-like involucral bracts (sometimes called involucral leaves) and 2 to 8 (usually 3 or fewer) flowering stalks (peduncles). The involucral bracts are conspicuously stalked and similar to the basal leaves.

The stem leaves are conspicuously stalked; moderately to densely covered with fine, short hairs, more so on the lower surface; and are smaller but otherwise similar to the basal leaves. They are in two or three ranks, though they sometimes appear one-ranked, and three of the leaves are much larger than the rest.

The inflorescence is a single flower at the end of each peduncle. Each peduncle is 4 to 12 long, unbranched, and moderately to densely covered with long, soft, shaggy, unmatted hairs. There peduncles are bare, with no secondary involucral bracts.

The flower is about ¾ in diameter. There are no petals, 4 to 6 (usually 5) petal-like sepals, and 50 to 75 stamens with yellow anthers. The sepals are oblong to elliptic or egg-shaped, greenish-white, 5 16 to ½ long, and to 3 16 wide. The flowers have no scent.

The infructescence is a dense, thimble-like fruiting head. It is densely woolly, narrowly cylinder-shaped. It is up to 1½ long, wide or less, and at least twice as long as it is wide.

The fruit is an achene with a tuft of hair attached to the end. In the fall when the achenes mature the fruiting head appears cottony.



12 to 40


Flower Color



Similar Species

Tall thimbleweed (Anemone virginiana) has a shorter, wider, more prickly fruiting head. It has only 3 leaves in a whorl at the base of the flowering stalk. There is a pair of leaf-like bracts on usually all but one of the flower stalks.

Dry to moderate moisture. Open woods, prairies. Full to partial sun.



June to August


Pests and Diseases





Distribution Map



2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 24, 28, 29, 30.









Plantae (green algae and land plants)


Viridiplantae (green plants)


Streptophyta (land plants and green algae)


Embryophyta (land plants)


Tracheophyta (vascular plants)


Spermatophytina (seed plants)


Magnoliopsida (flowering plants)




Ranunculales (buttercups, poppies, and allies)


Ranunculaceae (buttercup)


Ranunculoideae (anemones, buttercups, larkspurs and allies)


Anemoneae (anemones and allies)


Anemone (anemones and thimbleweeds)


Subordinate Taxa




Common Names

candle anemone


cylindrical thimbleweed

long-fruited anemone

long-head anemone

long-headed anemone

long-headed thimbleweed

candle anemone

prairie thimbleweed

thimble Weed












A dry, one-chambered, single-seeded seed capsule, formed from a single carpel, with the seed attached to the membranous outer layer (wall) only by the seed stalk; the wall, formed entirely from the wall of the superior ovary, does not split open at maturity, but relies on decay or predation to release the contents.



Modified leaf at the base of a flower stalk, flower cluster, or inflorescence.



A short, thickened, woody, persistent enlargement of the stem, at or below ground level, used for water storage.



In angiosperms, the stalk of a single flower or a flower cluster; in club mosses, the stalk of a strobilus or a group of strobili.



On plants: The stalk of a leaf blade or a compound leaf that attaches it to the stem. On ants and wasps: The constricted first one or two segments of the rear part of the body.



An outer floral leaf, usually green but sometimes colored, at the base of a flower.

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Dan W. Andree

candle anemone  


Bill Reynolds

candle anemone   candle anemone


candle anemone   candle anemone




Flowers Photos
candle anemone   candle anemone







candle anemone   candle anemone


  Fruiting Plants
candle anemone    

Fruiting Heads




Anemone cylindrica THIMBLEWEED
Frank Mayfield

Anemone cylindrica THIMBLEWEED



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Dan W. Andree

Location: a Prairie in Norman Co.

candle anemone
Bill Reynolds

Location: Pennington Co MN

candle anemone Sightings

Afton State Park

Agassiz Dunes SNA (MN DNR)

Blanket Flower Prairie SNA

Blazing Star Prairie Addition Preserve, South Unit

Blue Mounds State Park

Bonanza Prairie SNA

Buffalo River State Park

Bunker Hills Regional Park

Camden State Park

Cedar Mountain SNA

Charles A. Lindbergh State Park

Cherry Grove Blind Valley SNA

Chippewa Prairie

Clinton Prairie SNA

Compass Prairie SNA

Cottonwood River Prairie SNA

Crow Wing State Park

Crow-Hassan Park Reserve

Des Moines River SNA

Felton Prairie SNA, Bicentennial Unit

Flandrau State Park

Foxhome Prairie

Frenchman’s Bluff SNA

Frontenac State Park

Glacial Lakes State Park

Glendalough State Park

Glynn Prairie SNA

Hastings Sand Coulee SNA

Hayes Lake State Park

Helen Allison Savanna SNA

Hole-in-the-Mountain Prairie

Holthe Prairie SNA

Hyland Lake Park Reserve

Hythecker Prairie SNA

Interstate State Park

Iron Horse Prairie SNA

Jensen Memorial WMA

John Murtaugh Memorial WMA

John Peter Hoffman Spring Brook Valley WMA

Joseph A. Tauer Prairie SNA

Kasota Prairie

Kasota Prairie SNA

Kellogg Weaver Dunes SNA, Kellogg Weaver Unit

Kilen Woods State Park

Lake Bronson State Park

Lake Carlos State Park

Lake Maria State Park

Lake Rebecca Park Reserve

Lebanon Hills Regional Park

Leif Mountain

Maplewood State Park

McKnight Prairie

Minnesota Valley NWR, Louisville Swamp Unit

Mississippi River County Park

Mound Spring Prairie SNA, North Unit

Mound Spring Prairie SNA, South Unit

Neal WMA

Northern Tallgrass Prairie NWR, Hoffman Unit

Northern Tallgrass Prairie NWR, Pavia Unit

Northern Tallgrass Prairie NWR, Rengstorf Unit

Northern Tallgrass Prairie NWR, Touch the Sky Prairie Unit

Old Mill State Park

Ordway Prairie

Oronoco Prairie SNA

Osmundson Prairie SNA

Otter Tail Prairie SNA

Pankratz Memorial Prairie, North Unit

Pembina Trail Preserve SNA, Crookston Prairie Unit

Plover Prairie, East Unit

Prairie Bush Clover SNA

Prairie Coteau SNA

Prairie Creek WMA, Koester Prairie Unit

Racine Prairie SNA

Regal Meadow

Rice Lake National Wildlife Refuge

Ritter Farm Park

River Terrace Prairie SNA

Rock Ridge Prairie SNA

St. Croix Savanna SNA

St. Croix State Park

Sand Prairie Wildlife Management and Environmental Education Area

Sandpiper Prairie SNA

Santee Prairie SNA

Savage Fen SNA

Schaefer Prairie

Seven Sisters Prairie

Split Rock Creek State Park

Spring Creek Prairie SNA

Staffanson Prairie

Strandness Prairie

Tiedemann WMA

Twin Valley Prairie SNA

Twin Valley WMA: North Unit

Tympanuchus Prairie

Vermillion Highlands Research Recreation and WMA

Whitewater State Park

Wild Indigo SNA

Wild River State Park

Woodbury WMA

Yellow Bank Hills SNA






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