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A lupine's foliage is shaped like a flat-topped triangle covered in soft hairs, and the leaves are often stepped on their stem. The leaves produce a spicy scent when crushed, and when you break the leaves and flowers off the stem, you'll notice that the stem will release a distinctive odor.The polyphyllus variety in particular make up a great number of the hybrids which are generally grown as garden lupines, which can vary dramatically in colours. The majority of lupines do not thrive in rich heavy soils, and often only live for a matter of years if grown in such places, because crown contact with manure or rich organic matter encourages rotting. Russell was later awarded an MBE, and the Royal Horticultural Society awarded him the Veitch Memorial Medal for a lifetime's achievement in horticulture. Baker later secured Russell's entire stock; in their heyday, Bakers Nurseries Ltd. of Codsall, Wolverhamton attracted 80,000 visitors in June to see 40 acres (16 ha) of lupines in flower.
These approaches have allowed transforming this bitter weed into a valuable fodder crop. In the conditions of Northwest Russia positive results from the use of the sweet commercial cultivar "Pervenec" (first sweet variety), which is included in the State Catalogue of selection achievements of Russia. Breeding of sweet lupine is carried out also in Finland. The newer garden hybrids of today are highly poisonous because they are full of toxic alkaloids and should never be eaten.Species lupines include the wild lupine (Lupinus perennis; zones 3 through 8), a perennial native to the eastern and Midwestern United States. It has deep blue flowers and grows about 2 feet tall, says Gardenia.net. The famous Texas bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis), the Texas state flower, according to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, has more flower heads than other lupines. You can identify this annual by the white tips on each flower cluster.
The most popular hybrids, according to the South Dakota State University Extension, are the Russell hybrids (Lupinus × hybrida; zones 4 to 8), which usually grow 3 or 4 feet tall, with flower spikes that are between 1 and 2 feet in length. You can also choose a lupine dwarf cultivar with a maximum height between 1 and 2 feet.Silver lupine, white-leaf bush lupine, or evergreen lupine, is a perennial species native to California, Oregon, and northern Baja. It grows along the coast, foothills of the Sierras and into the mountains, in dry and open meadows, prairies and forest clearings. It is a member of several plant communities, including coastal sage scrub, chaparral, northern coastal scrub, foothill woodland, and yellow pine forest. It is a perennial shrub, taking up about 2 feet of space and reaching 5 feet. It has a light blue to violet flower on 3-12 inch (7.6-30 centimeter) stalks. The leaves are silver with a feathery texture. There are four recognized varieties in California that are found in different parts of the state and having some differences in habit and requirements. (Source: calscape.org)