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Horseflyweed Baptisia tinctoria

Phonetic Spelling
bap-TEE-zee-uh tink-TOR-ee-ah
Description

Wild indigo is a low maintenance, herbaceous perennial in the Fabaceae family. 

Where to Plant: Plant in a woodland, cottage, native, or meadow garden as a specimen or in small groups. This plant may not always be the best choice for a front and center placement in the garden because this plant is not extremely showy. Full sun, versus other sunlight conditions, makes this plant feel the happiest. Do not try to move this plant once it is settled.

Propagation and Pruning tips: 

Growing from seed may be challenging. If you do not mind not having the seed pods, then you could trim the plant.

Latin Name & Common Names: This plant is sometimes called a rattleweed because of the ripe pods' rattling noise. Tintoria means dye in Latin referring to dyes that were created from this plant.

This plant does not have major insect or disease problems.

Fire Risk: This plant has a medium flammability rating. 

Seasons of Interest:

    Bloom: Late spring-Early summer, May-June     Nut/Fruit/Seed:  Late summer/Fall

 

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

More information on Baptisia.

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
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Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#bees#sun#showy flowers#deciduous#yellow#full sun#partial shade#drought tolerant#cream#specimen#easy to grow#wildlife plant#showy#yellow flowers#native perennial#nectar plant#tough plant#low maintenance#fall interest#cottage garden#meadow#erosion control#showy fruits#disease resistant#fire#medium flammability#NC native#pest resistant#dye plant#deer resistant#cream flowers#herbaceous perennial#native garden#erosion#long lifespan#fall fruits#native wildflower#late spring flowers#dried arrangements#poor soils tolerant#larval host plant#food source summer#prairies#food source fall#early summer flowers#NC Native Pollinator Plant#dried fruits#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#dry soil#drought#forest farming#Duskywing butterflies#dry soils tolerant#butterfly friendly#pollinator garden#yellow dye#audubon#erosion tolerant#woodlands#blue dye#wild indigo duskywing butterfly
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Baptisia
    Species:
    tinctoria
    Family:
    Fabaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Indigeous people used this plant to make dyes though they were inferior to the dyes made with plants from the Indigofera genus. Blue dye came from the leaves and yellow from the flowers.
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    South Eastern Canada to North Central & Eastern U.S.A
    Fire Risk Rating:
    medium flammability
    Wildlife Value:
    This plant is a larval host to Pearl Crescent (Phyciodes tharos) caterpillars which have several broods and appear from April through November in the north and throughout the year in the deep south and Mexico. Flower nectars are attractive to bees and adult Pearl Crescent butterflies.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Wildlife Food Source
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    Deer damage, drought, poor and dry soils, and works well when planted to manage erosion
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 9 in.
    Width: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Wildflower
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Erect
    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:
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    Less than 12 inches
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Good Dried
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Legume
    Fruit Description:
    Inflated seed pods are seen from July to November. They come after the flowers have bloomed. They are ripe when black, and the pod sounds like a rattle because of the seeds inside. Some people like the looks of the seed pods for ornamental interest.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Gold/Yellow
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Flowers are only up to 0.5 inches long (though racemes can be up to 4-5 inches). Blooms from April to August. After the flowers bloom, the seed pods come.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Grayish green leaves are under the stem in a mound. The trifoliate leaves look like clovers, and the whole leaflet is only up to 1 inch long.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    The stem is between the leaf mound and the flowers that are on the upper part of the stem.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Cottage Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Small groups
    Specimen
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Diseases
    Drought
    Dry Soil
    Erosion
    Insect Pests
    Poor Soil