Name: Veronicastrum virginicum aka Culver’s Root
Type of Plant: A perennial native to North America that is important to pollinators and attracts a variety of beneficial insects. It’s a tall plant that should be placed at the back of a perennial garden in full sun.
Why I Love This Plant: I appreciate how the delicate flowers look when illuminated by the setting or rising sun. I love how this plant flowers from late-June into August, and isn’t attractive for deer or bunny grazing.
I also love that there is a named version of this native that is called ‘Facination’ and has lavender-pink flowers on slightly shorter stems. In my gardens, ‘Facination’ comes into flower a bit earlier than the species plant.
A Word to the Wise: Veronicastrum virginicum likes regular moisture or damp soils. Although it doesn’t require wet conditions, it isn’t the best plant for your dry, sunny gardens.
This is one of the perennials that doesn’t look like much in the pot when it’s on sale at the garden center. But don’t let that deter you! Buy it, plant it, and let it develop over two to four years…after that you’ll wonder how you ever did without it.
Don’t plant this in too much shade, or it will flop. Additionally, don’t over-fertilize as that will also cause the plants to be so tall that staking or a string of support to be necessary.