Sun Exposure: Sun, Part Sun
Soil Moisture: Medium-Dry, Dry
Soil Type: Sand, Sand-Loam
Height: 2 feet
Spread: 1 foot
Blooms: May, June, July
Root: Taproot, Rhizomes
Habitat: Sand Prairies, Openings in sandy woodlands, Oak savannas, Woodlands Edges, Stabilized sand dunes
Landscape uses: Pollinator gardens, Low area gardens, Wet Meadow plantings, Pond and creek edges
Wildlife Value: The flowers are pollinated primarily by honeybees, bumblebees, digger bees , Mason bees , and other long-tongued bees. Only pollen is available as a floral reward, which is forcibly ejected into the faces of such insect visitors.
Seed Origin: Ontario
Germination Code: C(10),B
Lupinus perennis - Wild Lupine
Wild Lupine is an interesting plant in the home garden, with its pea-like blue and purple flowers and palm shaped leaves. It is a popular choice for gardens or restorations with dry, sandy soils. Another common name of this species is Sundial Lupine, because the palmate leaves orient themselves in the direction of the sun.
This legume is a host plant of two extirpated butterflies in Ontario Great Lakes region: the Karner Blue butterfly and Frosted Elfin butterfly. Habitat loss is responsible for the decline of these butterflies throughout there range. Much of Ontario’s original savannah and barren habitat have been destroyed by development or taken over, through natural succession, by plants that create shady conditions. These conditions are unsuitable for the growth of wild lupine which requires open, sunny areas.