False Indigo Shrub


  • USDA Zones 4 to 9 (Find Your Zone)
  • Full Sun to Part Shade
  • Average to Wet Soils
  • Up to 1 Foot Tall and Wide
  • Blooms Spring
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Amorpha fruticosa, False Indigo Shrub, is a deciduous native shrub in the Fabaceae (bean) family. Naturally found in moist, open woodlands, roadsides, canyons, floodplains, streams, pond banks and along swamp edges. The genus name Amorpha is Greek for amorphos, meaning formless or deformed, which refers to the flowers having only one petal, which is very different from other members of pea family. The pinnately compound leaves provide seasonal interest, clustered at the upper third of the plant and giving a fine texture and airy appearance. It spreads easily by seeds and suckers and can form dense thickets which pruning can help prevent. This plant is excellent in a woodland or bog garden, along a pond margin or stream bank. Spreads 6-15 ft. wide and reaches 4-12 ft. wide.

Photo: Paul Cox, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center


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