Russel Lupine - Lupinus polyphyllus
Lupines symbolize imagination. The origin of the Latin name “Lupinus” means “of wolves”, based on the belief by ancient civilizations that lupines extracted the nutrients from the soil. The reality is that lupines are nitrogen fixers and add nitrogen to the soil. The Romans used lupine as a fertilizer, consumed the high protein seeds and also used the seeds as theater currency. The seeds are also said to aid in digestion and are used in skin care products for eliminating spots from the face. The delicious scent of the lupine add a sweetness to any garden! Imagine, it is the only food for the Karner blue butterfly.
These dramatic perennials add splashes of blue, red, pink to any sunny locations. With heights reaching 12” - 36”, it makes an excellent border plant with thick spikes.
Properly prepare garden bed, as lupine need to be planted in rich, moist, well draining soil. Before sowing, soak seeds overnight in water. For strong plants with lots of bloom either start seeds indoors 8 -10 weeks before last frost or sow outdoors in late summer/early fall and provide winter protection where necessary.
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