Baptisia, False Indigo

Baptisia australis, False Indigo
Photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.

The baptisia, or false indigo, has come into bloom and they’re stopping people in their tracks! I have to admit, baptisia has been on my list of top ten favorite perennials for about as long as I can remember. These large, low maintenance, hardy perennials leap out of the ground in spring, becoming a sizable plant seemingly overnight. Their beautiful, disease-resistant, blue-green foliage creates the perfect backdrop for long floral spires of pea-like flowers. They bloom from late spring into early summer. In fall,

Baptisia Solar Flare
Photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.

those lovely blossoms become dark seed heads that dry on the stem. Rattling when rustled by the wind or passers by.  I often see them planted as specimens, but my personal preference is to plant them as a hedge. Their dense foliage and three foot mature height make them perfect for large scale borders along sidewalks, driveways and in foundation plantings.

What to know so you can grow: Baptisia are hardy, long-lived perennials, and are native to North America. Most varieties mature around 3′ tall and wide. They’re drought tolerant once established, and thrive in full or part sun and well drained, average to poor soil. Baptisia are deer resistant and attractive to butterflies.  Beauty, low maintenance and native came together and made baptisia – so easy to love and grow!

Baptisia Twilite Prairieblues
Photo courtesy of Bailey Nurseries, Inc.