Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronalis) – wild flowers photographed in Amherstview, Ontario, Canada
Camera: Canon EOS 5D; Lens: Canon EF-24-105mm f/4.0L IS USM; f/11.0 @ 1/750 sec; ISO 400; Focal length: 105mm
In North America, Dame’s Rocket (Hesperis matronalis) is often confused with native Phlox species that also have similar large, showy flower clusters. They can be distinguished from each other by foliage and flower differences: dame’s rocket has alternately arranged leaves and four petals per flower, while phloxes have opposite leaves and five petals.
Dame’s rocket was brought to North America in the 17th century and has since become naturalized there. In Europe, it is host to the caterpillars of several butterfly species, including the orange tip (Anthocharis cardamines) and small white (Pieris rapae), and moths, such as Plutella porrectella.
It is considered an invasive species in some areas; three U.S. states have set the following legal status for it: