Identification: Flowers magenta (rarely white), relatively large (1.5 to 3 cm. wide) with 4 petals, and a long, thin corolla tube. Petals with outer margin not indented. Stigma divided into 4 parts and stamens conspicuous. Flowers arranged in a terminal raceme. Seedpods elongate, pointing upward. Stem smooth. Leaves alternate, thin and narrow (lanceolate), with smooth outer margins. Plant 3 to 7 feet in height.

Habitat: Fireweed is typically found in forest clearings or areas recently burned.

Flowering period: July to September.

Similar Species: Hairy willow herb also has magenta flowers and a four part stigma. However the tips of the petals are indented, not round. The leaves are usually in opposite pairs and their outer margins are toothed. The stem and leaves are hairy, not smooth. River Beauty (Epilobium latifolium) (not treated here) has very large (up to 2 inches in width) flowers. The flowers arise individually from the leaf axils and are not in a terminal raceme.