US Regions: Mountain, Plains/Texas, Midwest, Northern, Northeast, Southeast
Review By Brent Anderson
Sowing: Before planting in the spring, mix the seeds with very wet sand and store in the refrigerator for 30 days before planting. Press into the surface of completely saturated soil such as mud; do not bury the seed. If starting the seed indoors, submerge the growing containers in water up to an inch below the surface of the soil. Germination can be slow and irregular.
Seeds per Ounce: 340
Germination Ease: No Stratification
Pickerelweed, Pontederia cordata, is an emergent perennial with broad, sword shaped leaves and charming, tubular, blue and purple flowers on tall spikes. The flowers attract many insects, that become prey to carnivorous plants. The leaves are large, waxy, and quite succulent. It is winter hardy, and prefers growing along the water’s edge. It is a prolific grower, tolerating a wide range of wet growing conditions. The rhizomes can grow rapidly, forming a nice colony of plants in a season. It is an excellent companion for bladderworts and Aldrovanda, providing dappled light, and organic matter to the water, essential for the development of micro organisms that become the prey for aquatic carnivorous plants. It is propagated from seeds and cuttings. Seeds are edible and leaves can be cooked like spinach.
For Pickerelweed, each portion is a rooted, growing plant and size refers to age: small (1 year), medium (2 years), large (3+ years old).
Plants are shipped bare-root, wrapped in damp sphagnum moss. In it’s dormant season, it will be shipped as a dormant rhizomes with trimmed leaves. Photographs are representative of species, and not the specific plant shipped.
Ease to Grow: Easy.
Native Range: Wetlands of Eastern North and South America.
Zones: 3-9 (2-10).
Height: 8″ – 16+”.
Plant Type: Perennial, cold temperate.
Soil: General Bog Mix.
Soil pH: 5.5-7.
Light: Full to Partial Sun.
Use: Tall, stately blue flowers.
We dig plants when they are dormant from our outdoor beds and ship them April-May and October. Some species go dormant in the summer and we can ship them July/August. We are among the few still employing this production method, which is labor intensive but plant-friendly. They arrive to you dormant, with little to no top-growth (bare-root), packed in peat moss. They should be planted as soon as possible. Unlike greenhouse-grown plants, bare-root plants can be planted during cold weather or anytime the soil is not frozen. A root photo is included with each species to illustrate the optimal depth and orientation. Planting instructions/care are also included with each order.
TOOLS and BOOKS have the shipping fee included in the cost of the product (within the contiguous US).
SEED, TOOLS and BOOKS are sent year-round. Most orders ship within a day or two upon receipt.
To learn more, read our BLOG: How to Germinate Native Seeds
3-packs and trays of 32, 38, or 50 plants leave our Midwest greenhouses based on species readiness (being well-rooted for transit) and order date; Spring shipping is typically early May through June, and Fall shipping is mid-August through September. Potted 3-packs and trays of 38 plugs are started from seed in the winter so are typically 3-4 months old when they ship. Trays of 32/50 plugs are usually overwintered so are 1 year old. Plant tray cells are approximately 2” wide x 5” deep in the trays of 38 and 50, and 2.5″ wide x 3.5″ deep in the 3-packs and trays of 32; ideal for deep-rooted natives. Full-color tags and planting & care instructions are included with each order.