What flower is that?

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False Indigo flowersFalse Indigo close up of shrubFalse Indigo shrubFalse Indigo elaf
Lower right photo:© Francis R. Underwood 2019
Other photos:©David G. Smith, http://www.delawarewildflowers.org

The mystery plant for August 2019 is a deciduous shrub with long, alternate, odd-pinnate leaves (pinnate leaf with single terminal leaflet) holding 11-35  leaflets. Clusters of spike-like racemes grow along the upper stems forming spires of purple flowers. The flowers are small, about ½” long.

The shrub grows 4-6 feet tall.  According to NEWFS this shrub provides food for caterpillars of several native butterflies, Silver spotted skippers and Gray Hairstreaks.  This shrub grows along the shores of Greenwich Bay at Goddard Park and across the Bay along Mary’s Creek. It likely grows at other sites in RI. The blooming date is from late May to the middle of July.

It’s…

Botanical Name:
  Amorpha fruticosa
Common Name:
  False Indigo
Family:
  Fabaceae   (Pea Family)
Habitat:
  Above shores of bays and other sites

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