“Blue wild indigo” always strikes me as the most beautiful name ever for a plant. And the plant itself, whose Latin name is Baptisia australis, is absolutely lovely–an elegant representative of the prairie in the garden.
I have several varieties of baptisia in my garden, and both are winners. A variety named ‘Twilite Prairie Blues’ is in the side garden, and is blooming now.
This bushy perennial has the presence in the garden of a small shrub. (The difference in color in these three photos is due to the lighting.) After blooming, dark, decorative pods form.
I have a perennial geranium and some catmint planted near the blue wild indigo. Here’s a closeup of one of the geranium flowers, with bee!
A species Baptisia australis is up in the front garden, where it has been for years.
The species baptisia has slightly smaller flowers than ‘Twilite’. They are a beautiful blue.
Baptisia may look elegant, but it’s very tough–I’ve read that it’s tap root can be 15 feet long. So give careful thought to where you plant it, because it’s not easy to move!
Why would you want this prairie plant in your garden? Because as well as being beautiful, it’s drought tolerant. Must be something to do with the tap root! This baptisia flower looks like a little Quaker lady with a hat.
Yesterday, as I was thinking about this post, I wondered if baptisia was blooming at a nearby prairie. I am lucky enough to live only ten minutes from a prairie remnant, called Horlock Prairie. So I went over to check it out, and found the prairie dotted with the beautiful blue of wild indigo.
This is the species Baptisia australis, and it does look a bit different from the one in my front garden, but I’m not surprised–there can be tremendous variation in a species.
Its color was a paler blue.
I wondered if I might spot the lovely, and rare, white wild indigo. I was thrilled to see it!
I can’t tell you how glad I was to see it, because it’s not common.
While I was there, I took some photos of clover–not so rare, but still beautiful!
I love the sweet smell of the clover.
A beautiful grass, waving in the wind.
So if you are thinking of adding a prairie native to your garden, consider the beautiful blue wild indigo. Namaste. Fran