Baptisia australis

False indigo

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Key information

Flower colour






Skill level


photo by John Glover, copyright GAP Photos (43300)

Plant details

False indigo is a rather unusual plant which grows in well-drained acid soils. The foliage is like that of a tall, bushy pea plant with blue-green leaves in early summer plants are topped with tall spires of large, blue pea flowers like those of a rather large lupin. After the flowers are over, plants produce large seed pods which ripen to a deep grey and are an attractive late feature - plants dislike being disturbed, so save the seeds to sow in spring to raise new plants rather than try to divide old ones. The Royal Horticultural Society has given it its prestigious Award of Garden Merit (AGM).

Family: Papilionaceae

Genus: Baptista

Species: australis

Flower colour: Blue

Foliage colour: Mid-green

Feature: Flowers

Sun exposure: Full sun

Soil: Well-drained/light, Chalky/alkaline, Moist

Hardiness: Hardy

Skill level: Experienced

Height: 150cm

Spread: 60cm

Time to plant seeds: March to May

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