Saturday, September 06, 2008

Purpletop Vervain

Purpletop Vervain
Verbena bonariensis
(ver-BEE-nuh) (bon-ar-ee-EN-sis)
Synonyms: Brazilian Verbena, Upright Verbena, Tall Verbena

Some people consider this a weed in the garden but I usually encourage it to grow. The tall, wispy flower heads are enjoyable to me and if it gets to be too much then they get ripped out. They do not really provide an effective background for perennials they are better mixed right in with them. Another big plus is the wiry stems don’t need staking. I have been trying to photograph this plant for a long time and have decided to post these pictures of the flower and move on.

This plant has quite a long history in cultivation, dating back to the early 1700’s. It is a native of Brazil and Argentina and derives its species name from the city of Buenos Aires. I wouldn’t have guessed that. It is a perennial in the USDA Zones 7 and above and I am not quite sure but suspect that sometimes the plants overwinter here in Connecticut.

We are waiting for Tropical Storm Hanna to blow through here later today. We got a much needed 1.5 inches of rain this morning with 3 to 5 inches expected tonight. The plants really needed the rain but I think tonight maybe a little too much. I already have a sense of relief from the rain this morning as I can really get on edge if we have an extended dry spell to say nothing of all the time we spend watering.


Anonymous said...

The vervain is a lovely flower, and I have never understood why it is considered my many to be a weed. I love it with the rudbeckia in the background. Nice shot! And thanks for visiting my blog, also.

Jules said...

I agree it is lovely!!!

Thanks for visitng Rabaul DP. Am late visiting this weekend due to visitors, internet & power problems!!!

WiseAcre said...

You cleared the last of the brain clouds I was having.

I took a pic of Verbena bonariensis on a visit and was told the plant was a Verbena. I've never grown any so Verbena was never filed in my memory. On the way home I lost it completely and Vervain then got stuck in my head.

I never put the two together. For me Vervain means the wildflower hastata and it never clicked that it's first name is Verbena.

I guess deep down I was trying to connect the two but it never clicked until I got here.

Anonymous said...

Another beauty! Interesting info. Thanks!