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Baptisia australis AGM

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© RHS 2001

Characteristics

Plant type

Herbaceous Perennial

Habit

Clump-forming

Resilience

Hardiness

H7 (very hardy)

Colour

Flower

Dark Blue in Summer

Foliage

Green and Grey/Silver in Autumn, Spring and Summer

Fruit

Dark Grey/Silver in Autumn and Summer

Size

Ultimate height

1-1.5 metres

Ultimate spread

0.5-1 metres

Time to ultimate height

2-5 years


Preferred common name

blue false indigo

Family

Papilionaceae


Baptisia are perennials with branched stems bearing three-parted leaves and terminal or axillary racemes of pea flowers, followed by conspicuous inflated pods

B. australis is an herbaceous perennial forming a clump to 1.2m, with grey-green, trifoliate leaves and erect, lupin-like racemes of violet-blue flowers, followed by inflated, dark grey pods

Other common names

  • bastard lupine
  • false indigo
  • false lupine
  • golden indigo
  • indigo weed
  • tall false indigo

Synonym(s)

  • Baptisia caerulea
  • Baptisia confusa
  • Baptisia minor
  • Baptisia versicolor

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • South-facing, East-facing or West-facing
  • Exposed

Cultivation

Grow in open, porous, preferably sandy soil in full sun; drought resistant once roots have penetrated the soil. Best left undisturbed, although vigorous clumps may be carefully divided in spring.

Soil

  • Well-drained
  • Acid or Neutral
  • Loam or Sand

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in pots in a cold frame as soon as seed is ripe or propagate by division in early spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Cottage/Informal Garden, Flower borders and beds, Low Maintenance, Cut Flowers, Banks and Slopes, Wildlife Gardens, Prairie Planting or Drought Resistant


How to care

Pruning

Cut down once foliage has blackened

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally disease free