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Baptisia sphaerocarpa (yellow wild indigo)
Species Distribution Map: Click to enlarge
Map Color Key © 2013 BONAP

Baptisia sphaerocarpa

yellow wild indigo

A very sturdy, drought-resistant garden plant with striking spikes of pea flowers that range from butter yellow to gleaming gold.


Height

2-3 Feet

Spread

2-3 Feet

Bloom Color

Yellow

USDA Hardiness Zone 5-8

yellow wild indigo Interesting Notes

A riot of yellow in late spring and early summer! This has long been our favorite of the baptisia species. The rounded blue green leaves adorn the 18" tall x 18" wide clumps. In mid to late April, the clumps are topped with stupendous 12-15" tall spires of pure yellow flowers, followed in late summer by spherical tan seed pods. 


The Baptisia genus prefer slightly acidic to slightly alkaline soils but tolerate lime and clay well. It can be found from Missouri to Texas and Louisiana but shows most distinctly in the dry grass prairies of Texas Hill Country. For best performance, we suggest placement in full sun in lean, well-drained soil.


A wonderful plant for the perennial border to the naturalized grassland meadow, this plant packs a punch. Great for multiple seasons including winter interest, the seedpods are used in cut flower arrangements. It spreads slowly by rhizome over time and takes about three years to establish. Baptisia have deep taproots - it is encouraged to move them only when necessary. As with others in the genus, this plant is a host plant to different Lepidoptera larvae as well as a great pollinator plant.

Baptisia sphaerocarpa Growing and Maintenance Tips

Grow in full sun or part shade in average to dry soil. Baptisia has a very deep tap root, giving it the ability to survive long dry periods and making it a challenge to move once it is established. Move in the early spring if you must. Full sun is best for the best flowering and performance.

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Sun
Full Sun
Part Sun
Part Sun
Songbird-friendly
Songbird-friendly
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Drought Tolerant
Drought Tolerant
Cut Flower
Cut Flower

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Average
Dry
Attributes
Native to North America
Season of Interest (Flowering)
Late Spring / Early Summer