Categories: Herbaceous Perennial
Baptisia australis features purple, lupine-like flowers in erect racemes (to 12") atop flower spikes extending well above a foliage mound of clover-like, trifoliate, bluish-green leaves (leaflets to 2" long).
Blooms in spring. Flowers give way to inflated seed pods (to 2.5" long) which turn charcoal black when ripe and have considerable ornamental interest. Seeds rattle around in the blackened pods which were once popularly used by children as rattles. Grows natively in rich woods, thickets and along streambanks from Pennsylvania south to North Carolina and Tennessee.
Cut back to 6 inches in the fall and remove the dead foliage in spring. May need staking to maintain it's form. Deadhead after blooming. Does not like to be transplanted. Fertilize with Plant-tone or a water-soluble fertilizer.
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