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Verbena bonariensis (Tall verbena)
verbena bonariensis

Zone: 7-11

Soil: Sand to clay

Light: Full sun to part sun

Bloom colour: Lavender to purple

Bloom period: From mid-summer to frost

Height: 36 - 72 inches

Moisture: Dry to medium

Attracts: Attracts a variety of butterflies and some bees.

Notes: Tall verbena is native to the tropical regions of South America. It reseeds easily and must therefore be used with caution. It definitely should not be planted and left unmanaged. It should also not be planted anywhere south of New England as it can overwinter in these areas and can become an invasive species. It flowers easily within one growing season and is therefore used as an annual in southern Canada. It is easy to grow in well drained soils but can become subject to mildew if it is not watered often enough. It will continue to reappear for a number of years after it has been planted because of over-wintering seeds. If you do not want it back, it is easy to identify and to control.

Tall verbena is not really a refined plant, but, it is often planted en masse and it is eyecatching. As a single plant amongst perennials, it loses its visual appeal, but its abililty to attract butterflies and provide a constant source of nectar still makes it a worthwhile plant in a wildlife garden. It seems to be more popular with butterflies than with bees. It is not commonly on sale. You may be able to find it as a specialty annual.

Verbena bonariensis
Verbena with bumblebee
Verbena bonariensis with bumblebee
Verbena bonariensis with fiery skipper
Verbena bonariensis with Fiery Skipper
Verbena bonariensis with Comma butterfly
Verbena bonariensis with Comma butterfly