- Common Name(s):
- Blue verbena, Blue vervain, Simpler’s joy, Swamp verbena, Swamp vervain
- Native Plants, Poisonous Plants, Wildflowers
Blue vervain spreads through rhizomes. It can grow in disturbed sites and is commonly found in moist meadows, thickets, pastures, riversides, marshes, ditches, and river-bottom prairies.
Wildlife Value: Cardinals, sparrows, and juncos eat the seeds. Cottontail rabbits eat the foliage, however most mammals avoid its bitter taste. Larval host plant for verbena moth and the common buckeye butterfly. Long and short tongued bees collect the nectar and sometimes the pollen. Other bee pollinators include: epoline cuckoo bees, eucerine miner bees, halictid bees, and the verbena bee (a specialist pollinator). In addition the thread-waisted wasp, bee flies, thick-headed flies and golden soldier beetle are also known to all visit blue vervain.
- 2 - 5 ft.
- Leaves: 6 in long x 1 in wide; toothed, lance shaped leaves occur in pairs on the stem. Stem: hairy, square, green or red.
- Flowers: Showy, 5 in panicles of purplish-blue flowers. Individuals blooms are lobed and 1/4 inch wide. Fruit: approximately 1 1/2 months after blooming each bloom gives way to four oblong, reddish-brown, triangular-convex “nutlets.”
- Warning: Blue vervain can interfere with blood pressure medication and hormone therapy. Large doses will induce vomiting and diarrhea.
NCCES plant id: 3202