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A Lobelia siphilitica blue selection

A Lobelia siphilitica blue selection

Lobelia siphilitica blue selection

Lobelia siphilitica offers a deep-hued counterpoint to the yellows of late summer. This colony-forming, short-lived perennial grows well in medium to wet soils, especially with a little shade. In its native range, Great Blue Lobelia can be found in wet prairies, soggy meadows, pond and creek edges, marshland borders, and other moist areas.

Siphilitica

Studies have shown the plants that are female only show no difference in fruit sets and seed production. This is completely different from the Pale-spike Lobelia, L. spicata, which also has male sterile plants, and those male sterile plants produce more fruit capsules, more seed per capsule and better germinating seeds. A study done by Miller and Stanton-Geddes published in 2007 looked at the frequency of L. spicata and L. siphilitica plants to have only female flowers and the affect on seed production. [PDF of Study] This study and others have shown that the number of female only plants in a given population is dependent on latitude - the further south, the greater percentage of female only plants.Lobelia siphilitica offers a deep-hued counterpoint to the yellows of late summer. This colony-forming, short-lived perennial grows well in medium to wet soils, especially with a little shade. In its native range, Great Blue Lobelia can be found in wet prairies, soggy meadows, pond and creek edges, marshland borders, and other moist areas.

This blue counterpart of the Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis) is a most desirable plant for woodland gardens especially since it blooms bright blue in late summer. The unfortunate species name, siphilitica, is based on the fact that it was a supposed cure for syphilis.Names: The genus Lobelia is named after the Flemish botanist Matthias de l'Obel (1538-1616), who, when he moved to England as physician to James I, anglicized his name to Matthew Lobel, hence "lobelia." The species siphilitica, is a reference to the old folk medicine belief that extracts made from the plant could cure syphilis. (Source: www.friendsofthewildflowergarden.org)

 

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