Purple Prairie Clover ( Dalea purpurea) Native Wildflowers Heirloom Prairie Flower
Height 1-3 ft
Purple Prairie Clover is an incredibly interesting plant that is perfect in bulk plantings or as a stand alone specimen. Legumes such as Prairie Clovers, harbor beneficial bacteria called rhizobia-plants are able to capture nitrogen from the air, and the bacteria assists in restoring it in the plant. Plants act as a natural soil fertilizer when the spent plant material is left to enrich the soil.
Prairie Clover has purple thimble shaped flowers that adorn splayed stems and delicate foliage. This prairie plant is easily grown in average to dry soils; it has a deep taproot that supports a long-lived plant - virtually impervious to heat and drought. Excellent in a variety of plantings including rock gardens, sunny perennial borders, native plant gardens or naturalized prairie habitats.
Prairie Clover is a pollinator favorite, and is the host plant for Dogface Butterfly larvae, and provides nectar to many species of butterflies, bees and other pollinating insects. One of the most widespread of the Prairie Clovers, this variety is a key element in rebuilding prairie habitats and areas disturbed by development.
The root of Purple Prairie Clover was used by several native American first nations for chewing and it is said to have a pleasant, sweet flavor. The dried leaves have been used as a tea substitute. The first nations from Montana used the steeped bruised leaves as a poultice to be applied to fresh wounds.
- Full sun
- Sand to Clay soils
- Start seeds indoors at least 5 weeks prior to last frost ( 50F evenings) Plant seeds in slightly moistened soilless growing mix. Sow seeds 1/8 in deep. Seeds will germinate upon sowing when placed in a warm location. Keep moist but not soggy and keep warm ( 70 F) When seedlings are 2 in tall transplant into the garden
- OR sow direct outdoors in mid spring or late fall; plant seeds 1/8 in deep and water in lightly.
- Spacing: 1 ft
- Seed Count: 8