Nemophila menziesii, known commonly as baby blue eyes or baby's-blue-eyes,[1] is an annual herb, native to western North America.[2][3]

Baby blue eyes
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Boraginales
Family: Boraginaceae
Genus: Nemophila
N. menziesii
Binomial name
Nemophila menziesii



The plant is native to California, Baja California, and Oregon.[2]

It grows virtually throughout California at elevations from sea level up to almost 6,500 feet (2,000 m). It grows in many types of habitats, including chaparral, valley grasslands, and montane locales.[3][2]



Nemophila menziesii is variable in appearance. Lower leaves are stalked, lobed and oppositely arranged, 10–50 millimetres (0.4–2.0 in) with five to thirteen lobes, each entire or with one to three teeth. Upper leaves are more or less sessile and less lobed than lower. The stalk of the inflorescence is 20–60 millimetres (0.8–2.4 in). Calyx lobes are 4–8 millimetres (0.2–0.3 in). The flower is blue with a white center or all white, usually with blue veins and black dots near the center. It is 6–40 millimetres (0.2–1.6 in) wide. The tube is less than or equal to the filaments.



The species includes three varieties:[3]

  • Nemophila menziesii var. atomaria has white flowers with black dots, often with a faint blue tint or blue veins in the corolla. It is found on coastal bluffs or grassy slopes in Oregon, Northwestern California, the Central Coast of California, and the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Nemophila menziesii var. integrifolia has blue flowers, with black dots at the center and deep blue veins. It is found in grasslands, canyons, woodlands, and slopes in the Central Coast, southern Coast Ranges, southwestern California, east of the Sierra Nevada range, and into the Mojave Desert and Baja California
  • Nemophila menziesii var. menziesii has bright blue flowers with white centers that are generally dotted with black. It is found virtually throughout California, in meadows, grasslands, chaparral, woodlands, slopes, and desert washes, but it does not occur above 5,200 feet (1,600 meters).



It is also cultivated as an ornamental plant, as annual wildflower in native plant, water conserving, traditional, and wildlife gardens.

It can occasionally be found outside its native range as an introduced species, such as in Alaska.[4]



  1. ^ BSBI List 2007 (xls). Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland. Archived from the original (xls) on 2015-06-26. Retrieved 2014-10-17.
  2. ^ a b c Sullivan, Steven. K. (2018). "Nemophila menziesii". Wildflower Search. Retrieved 2018-07-06.
  3. ^ a b c "Nemophila menziesii". in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora. Jepson Herbarium; University of California, Berkeley. 2018. Retrieved 2018-07-06.