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Baptisia albescens

Phonetic Spelling
bap-TEE-zee-uh al-BES-enz
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Baptisia albescens, or False Indigo, is an erect, native, herbaceous perennial in the Fabaceae (bean) family. The name is derived from Greek baptisis, which means to dip or immerse. Its native habitat is woodland borders and open woods and is often found in dry woodlands, pine flatwoods, and roadsides. This plant was selected as the 2011 NC Wildflower of the Year, a program managed by the North Carolina Botanical Garden with some financial support from the Garden Club of North Carolina.

 False Indigo is one of the smaller and bushier species of Baptisia and grows best in partial shade to full sun. It is known for being a tough, long-lived plant that tolerates a variety of conditions from drought, poor soil, dry soil, and erosion. False indigo may be propagated by cuttings or seeds. The plant has a deep taproot which makes it drought tolerant, but also difficult to transplant. The attractive white flowers that appear in the spring contrast nicely against light green leaves.  The fruit is a yellowish brown, inflated, stalked pod with several seeds. Include False Indigo in a drought-tolerant garden, a native garden, or a pollinator garden. 

Diseases, Insect Pests, and Other Plant Problems:

No known diseases or insect pests.

 

VIDEO Created by Homegrown featuring Mark Weathington, Director of JC Raulston Arboretum 

More information on Baptisia.

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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#full sun tolerant#drought tolerant#native perennials#erosion control#disease resistant#NC native#pest resistant#deer resistant#long lifespan#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#larval host plant#food source fall#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#dry soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#partial shade tolerant#Audubon#NC Wildflower of the Year
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#full sun tolerant#drought tolerant#native perennials#erosion control#disease resistant#NC native#pest resistant#deer resistant#long lifespan#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#larval host plant#food source fall#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#dry soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#partial shade tolerant#Audubon#NC Wildflower of the Year
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Baptisia
    Species:
    albescens
    Family:
    Fabaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Root Cutting
    Seed
    Stem Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Southeastern United States
    Distribution:
    Virginia south to Florida, Tennessee, Alabama
    Wildlife Value:
    This plant is a larval host for butterflies. It also attracts pollinators.
    Play Value:
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    Deer damage; tolerates drought, poor soils, dry soil, and erosion
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9a, 9b, 10b, 10a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Legume
    Fruit Description:
    The fruits are unlike other Baptisia species being cylindric, about 3 times as long as the diameter, and yellowish-brown (rather than black) when mature. Puffy bean pod. Fruits display from July to October.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Spike
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Irregular
    Lipped
    Flower Petals:
    4-5 petals/rays
    fused petals
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    The flowers have four to five petals each and stand up on a raceme or spike. White flowers bloom from May to July.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Obovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    The three-parted leaves have an alternate arrangement and turn black upon drying.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Accent
    Border
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Diseases
    Drought
    Dry Soil
    Erosion
    Insect Pests
    Poor Soil
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Causes low toxicity if eaten. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea. All parts are poisonous.
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Baptisin and cytisine
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Bark
    Flowers
    Fruits
    Leaves
    Roots
    Sap/Juice
    Seeds
    Stems