Baptisia 'Purple Smoke'
A natural hybrid of Baptisia australis and Baptisia alba, two US native species. I've raised both the parents from seed - getting those to a blooming size took literally years, and took several attempts. So when I found these at an end-of-season sale, I jumped on them. They still took more than a year to bloom, but finally, we can say we have blue-flowered baptisia in our garden. Worth waiting for, too - subtly two-toned violet-blue flowers offset by charcoal-gray stems, with loose foliage typical of most baptisias we've grown. Since that first bloom they have grown progressively larger, to where they are show-stopping specimens in May.
||dusty purple (early summer)
|These plants are among the first perennials to turn their top growth to a lifeless state in fall. Although that might be viewed as a negative, the mass of grayish leaves has its own charm. |
We left this plant behind in our Pennsylvania garden (and wish it well); we don't grow it in Houston.
One or more images of this plant are included in my stock photo catalog
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Visitors to this page have left the following comments
|Mandy Taylor||Jun 19, 2008||I just bought two of these after seeing them at the RBG, they are so vibrant and I will wait patiently for them as they are very small, not even a foot yet, so it might be quit a wait...|
|Christa Stengel||Aug 23, 2009||Genus name is Baptista, rather than Baptisia.|
That's an interesting assertion - but runs contrary to just about all the information out there, printed and online.
|Jennette||Apr 08, 2011||I hear mixed information about transplanting this species. Have you had any experience moving Baptisia around? I had to move a plant from one bed to another last week. Wow, were the roots long! They went in all directions so I basically had to cut it out with a spade shovel. Now I'm afraid the plant won't recover. |
I've had a poor success rate transplanting larger baptisia specimens, but this is certainly the time of year you're most likely to be successful.
|Olga||Jul 08, 2011||Does the long tap root become a problem when planted close to the house?|
Not at all – the taproot holds the plant in place, but it does not cause any damage.
|Carol Mack||May 19, 2013||I have one of these which is about 6yrs old (it has blue flowers)...how and when do I divide it?? I usually just cut it to the ground and it pops right back up in the spring time!!! I love it in flower arrangements. I found one recently on the 50% table at our local garden center...love those deals!!!|
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May 29, 2015