Picture Snob

November 18, 2010

Baptisia australis--A wild indigo that's easy to grow


I have in my garden a plant I've been calling indigo and have felt very proud that I was going a species once considered so valuable in ancient times. Now I have discovered that the plant is not the tropical indigo grown in India but Baptisia australis a native American that was used as a substitute and is called False Indigo.

It's really a lovely plant that grow three or four feet tall and has racemes covered with blue pea like flowers. It is hardly ever bothered by pests or disease. The seed pods are pea shaped and turn black and make a nice background for flower gardens or flower arranging. The plant is hardy to zone 3 which makes it a great selection even in tough winter areas.

You can start these plants from seed and they also do well with cuttings. They tolerate drought well once established. I seldom water the part of the garden where they grow and reseed and propagate year after year. But I think I will spread the seed in the back of the flower beds where the blooms and foliage will grow over the lower plants in front.

At Blue Wild Indigo - Baptisia australis - Packet

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Posted by Marilyn Renaker at November 18, 2010 9:30 AM
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