General Landscape Uses:
Groundcover in open, dry areas. Also wildflower gardens.
Widely cultivated. Available at
All Native Garden Center and Plant Nursery
in Fort Myers. 239-939-9663.
Medium herbaceous wildflower.
About 1-3 feet in height. Generally broader than tall.
Its native range in South Florida obscured, but probably native to the Monroe, Dade, Collier and Lee counties, mostly along the coast; West Indies, Mexico and Central America. Widely cultivated and naturalized outside of its historic range.
Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida. Habitats:
Coastal rock barrens and open disturbed sites.
Moist, well-drained sandy or limestone soils, without humus.
Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Moderate; grows near salt water, but is protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Blue or purple with a white center.
Small, semi-showy flowers on long spikes.
Two inconspicuous tuberculate nutlets.
Wildlife and Ecology: Larval host plant
for tropical buckeye (
for many butterflies including: Bahamian swallowtail (
), clouded skipper (
), Cuban crescent (
), Dorantes longtail (
), fiery skipper (
), great southern white (
), gulf fritillary (
), julia (
), large orange sulphur (
), little yellow (
), long-tailed skipper (
), lyside skipper (
), Meske's skipper (
), Palatka skipper (
), red admiral (
), Schaus' swallowtail (
Papilio aristodemus ponceanus
), swarthy skipper (
), tropical checkered-skipper (
) and variegated fritillary (
Widely cultivated outside of its native range, and perhaps escaping from cultivation in Central Florida and Alabama.