Indigofera species (FABACEAE, formerly LEGUMINOSAE)
Planting and Growing Indigo Bush
You’ll find everything you need to know to plant and grow indigo bush in the accompanying table’s tabs:
- Flowers, foliage, pods, and seeds of indigo bush
- Growing conditions for indigo bush
- When and where to plant indigo bush
- How to plant indigo bush
- How to shape, prune and control growth of indigo bush
- Watering, fertilizing, and care of indigo bush
- Landscape uses of indigo bush
- Pest and disease control for indigo bush
Growing Indigo Bush
About 750 species of fast-growing, erect, woody, deciduous shrubs, 18–36 in. (45–90 cm) tall and wide, with alternate, smooth, bright green, oval, divided, rounded leaves, to 4 in. (10 cm) long, with 1–5-paired, oval leaflets, to 1-1/2-in. (38-mm) long.
Commonly cultivated species include Chinese indigo, Indigofera incarnata; Bernheim giant Chinese indigo, Indigofera kirilowii; and true indigo, Indigofera tinctoria.
Indigo Bush Planting and Care Guide
Flowers and Seeds
Many pink, purple, rose, white, red, or yellow, pealike flowers, to 3/4-in. (19-mm) long, in erect, spiking clusters, 5–8 in. (13–20 cm) long, in summer, form beanlike pods containing seed in autumn.
U.S.D.A. Plant Hardiness Zones 4–10, depending on species. Hardy.
Soil Type and Fertility
Moist, well-drained, sandy loam. Fertility: Rich–average. 6.0–7.0 pH.
Where and How to Plant
Full sun. Space 10–20 in. (25–50 cm) apart.
Easy. Keep moist; allow soil surface to dry between waterings. Fertilize quarterly. Prune severely in spring, before growth begins. Propagate by cuttings, division, seed.
About This Species
Good choice for borders, edgings in cottage, meadow gardens. True indigo, Indigofera tinctoria, is the source of indigo dye. Pest and disease resistant.