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Lead Plant (Amorpha canescens)

Attract birds, butterflies and native bees to your garden with the showy purple-blue flowers of lead plant.

This North American native can be found growing in open woodlands, glades and prairies. It is hardy in zones 2 to 9 and tolerates dry soils and droughty conditions once established.

This perennial grows 1 to 3 feet tall, develops woody stems over time, and may die back to the ground in extremely cold winters. The fine textured leaves appear to be dusted with white lead, inspiring its common name.

Combine it with other plants that flower midsummer through fall to extend your gardens colorful display throughout the growing season.

These plants are good for naturalizing, native plantings and in prairie and meadow gardens. Protect young plants from browsing deer and rabbits.  Be patient as it takes a few years for them to start flowering.

A bit more information: This plant was also called Devil’s Shoestrings by early settlers.  The plant's deep roots that helped it survive fire and drought made plowing difficult. 

Upcoming Appearances


Jan. 26, 2022
Gardening for Wildlife
(webinar)

Jan. 29, 2022
WCBA's Home Building &
Remodeling Expo

West Bend, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 2, 2022
Small Space Gardening
(webinar)

Feb. 11-13, 2022
PBS Wisconsin
Garden & Landscape EXPO

Madison, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 18-20, 2022
NARI Milwaukee
Spring Home Improvement Show

Milwaukee, WI
(in-person event)

Feb. 23, 2022
Dahlias - Proven Performers!
(webinar)

March 1, 2022
Michigan Green Industry Assn.
Annual Tradeshow & Convention

Novi, MI
(in-person event)

March 5-6, 2022
​​​​​​​Maryland Home & Garden Show
Lutherville-Timonium, MD
(in-person event)

​​​​​​​March 26-27, 2022
​​​​​​​REALTORS Home & Garden Show
West Allis, WI
(in-person event)

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