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Ironweed Vernonia lettermannii 'Iron Butterfly'

Other Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
ver-NON-ee-uh let-ter-MAH-nee-eye
Description

Iron Butterfly Ironweed is a perennial wildflower in the aster family with a mounding habit and showy purple flowers. This cultivar was created to accentuate a compact habit, rapid growth rate, and long bloom period. Many frilly disc flower appear in summer at a time when other flowers are giving out to provide the bees and butterflies with nectar. They will flock to this plant! The foliage is attractive even when not in bloom, adding a finer texture to the garden. 

Grow this plant in average well-drained soils in full sun to light shade. It is drought tolerant once established and poor soil tolerant so do not over-fertilize. Leave stems intact during the winter and cut to the ground in late winter or early spring.

Use Iron Butterfly in a rock garden, drought-tolerant garden or in the border of a pollinator garden. 

More information on Vernonia lettermanii.

See this plant in the following landscapes:
Pollinator Garden- Full Sun Pollinator Garden- Partial Shade
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#drought tolerant#fine texture#fast growing#magenta flowers#long bloom time#rock gardens#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#compact habit#butterflies#butterfly garden#frilly flowers
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#showy flowers#drought tolerant#fine texture#fast growing#magenta flowers#long bloom time#rock gardens#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#compact habit#butterflies#butterfly garden#frilly flowers
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Vernonia
    Species:
    lettermannii
    Family:
    Asteraceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Cultivar of a native plant
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 6 in. - 2 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herbaceous Perennial
    Perennial
    Wildflower
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Mounding
    Multi-stemmed
    Growth Rate:
    Rapid
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • 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
    Shallow Rocky
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Alkaline (>8.0)
    Neutral (6.0-8.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7b, 7a, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Corymb
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Long Bloom Season
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Frilly 1 inch purplish-red disc flowers in terminal corymbs in mid to late summer.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Linear
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Attractive linear green leaves spiral alternately up the stem and become denser at the tips. Up to 5 inches long and 1/8 inch wide with smooth margins.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Pool/Hardscape
    Slope/Bank
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Rock Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Dry Soil