Amorpha californica

California false indigo

Plant Type: Shrub
Sun: Partial Shade
Drainage: Medium, Well-draining
Water: Naturalize, Occasional
Height X Width: 8' X 6'
Santa Clara County Local: No
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California false indigo is encountered in interior coastal mountains from San Luis Obispo County south into Baja California. There is also a variety found in the counties immediately north of San Francisco. California false indigo grows in a fountain-like form with multiple fronds of compound leaves. The overall impression is reminiscent of a large fern. The flowers are dramatic frond of purple with orange details, not unlike those of a lupine to which false indigo is related. This plant prefers a shady location and little water once established. In the winter it will go entirely dormant and largely die back to the ground. California false indigo is a larval food source for the California dogface butterfly.


Deer Resistant: Somewhat
Attractive to Bees: Yes
Attractive to Butterflies: Yes
Good Under Oaks: Yes
Evergreen or Deciduous: Deciduous