Elegant Lupine (Elegans) has
green foliage and
blue flowers, with
a smattering of
conspicuous white fruits or seeds.
The greatest bloom is usually observed in the
with fruit and seed production starting in the
summer and continuing until
not retained year to year.
Elegant Lupine (Elegans) has a
short life span relative to most other plant species and a
rapid growth rate.
At maturity, the typical
Elegant Lupine (Elegans) will reach up to
3 feet high, with a maximum height at 20 years of
Elegant Lupine (Elegans) is not commonly available from nurseries, garden stores and other plant dealers and distributors. It can be propagated by
It has a
moderate ability to spread through seed production and the seedlings have
Note that cold stratification is
not required for seed germination and the plant cannot survive exposure to temperatures below
low tolerance to drought and restricted water conditions.
Uses of : Landscaping, Medicinal, Culinary, etc.
This legume has shown considerable promise as a winter cover crop. It produces good to excellent ground cover in young irrigated citrus groves, and is an excellent producer of honey nectar.
Lupinus elegans Kunth, elegant lupine, grows to a height of 4 feet and is 3 feet wide. Growth is from a central stem which branches frequently. The blooming period lasts for several weeks, commencing about mid-January and continuing to late March. Overall seed production is good, but the amount available for harvest at any one time is rather limited as the seed pods shatter readily upon reaching maturity. The seed produced is small, hard, persists in the soil, and volunteers readily in the autumn months.
Required Growing Conditions
Elegant lupine is adapted to fine and medium textured soils with moderate fertility and a pH of 6 to 7. The species has some drought tolerance, but prefers a minimum of 35 inches of annual precipitation to grow.
Cultivation and Care
Plow and/or disk the soil thoroughly and follow by firmly packing the soil while it is still moist. Fertilize at the recommended rate at or prior to seeding. Twenty-five pounds of seed per acre are required for broadcast seedings, while 12 to 15 pounds per acre should be used for row planting. Row planting results in more satisfactory inoculation and more rapid early growth. Inoculation is required regardless of planting method. Pack the soil firmly over either broadcast or row planted seed.
General Upkeep and Control
This lupine can withstand moderate drought, but will grow considerably better if supplemental irrigation can be provided during drought periods. Seed harvesting occurs from mid-March to mid-April depending upon location, soil, weather and plant conditions. The seed is harvested while much of the plant is still green. The crop is mowed when the optimum amount of nearly mature seed is present and is allowed to dry on the ground. When the leaves, pods and stalks are nearly dry, the material is run through a conventional seed harvesting combine.
Pests and Potential Problems There are no known serious insect pests of the plant; however, several insects will attack the seed both on the plant and in storage.
Cultivars, Improved, and Selected Materials (and area of origin) Armex (Mexico) is an informal release. Seed is available at most commercial seed sources.
Source: USDA, NRCS, PLANTS Database, plants.usda.gov.
National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA