Plant family: Fabaceae - Pea
Plant type: Annual, Groundcover
Plant origin: N/A, California
Coastal Sage Scrub, Grassland, Inland Sage Scrub
Decomposed Granite, Sand, Sandy Loam, Adaptable
Miniature Lupine is a showy flowering annual native to northwestern Baja California and throughout California. It is found in diverse habitats where it often shares habitats with other prolifically blooming spring and early summer wildflowers, including the California poppy. The abundant flowers are a deep blue-purple and white or pale purple, often making large waves of color contrasting beautifully with the gold of California poppies across open areas in early spring. This plant, like other lupines, is a nitrogen fixer and important to soil health and the plants in its community.
As its name suggests the flowers are usually two colors, with one often a deep blue, the other color is often white. Lupinus bicolor is cultivated as an ornamental plant, in native plant, drought tolerant, and wildlife gardens, and in natural landscaping and habitat restoration projects. Flowers blue with white banner spot that becomes deep magenta after fertilization.
Lupine are of value to pollinators, including native bees and bumble bees. Very useful in California ecosystems to add nitrogen to the soil so that other plants in the community can benefit.
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