Amoprpha fruticosa, also known as Indigo Bush or False Indigo, is a native Nitrogen fixing deciduous shrub in the legume family that typically grows 5-10 feet tall and 6-15 feet wide. It is a hardy shrub with distinct fern-like foliage similar to many of its relatives in the legume (pea) family. Fragrant blooms form in early summer.
Bees suck nectar or collect pollen, while beetles and flower flies suck nectar or feed on pollen. White-tailed Deer browse on this shrub sparingly.
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Easily grown in average, medium to wet, well-drained soils in full sun to light shade. Tolerant of occasional flooding. Also tolerates poor, sandy, somewhat dry soils. May spread by self-seeding and/or suckers to form thickets. Prune in late winter to early spring to improve shrub form. Indigo bush matures to large spreading shrub, sometimes reaching up to 15 ft in full sun. In the right location with some room to spread, it creates a wonderful natural screen or hedge-type planting. For a smaller version of this plant with similar flowers, consider adding Leadplant (Amorpha canescens)
In its native range, it can be found in moist open woodland areas, floodplains, stream banks and swamp margins. It is often used for erosion control, windbreaks and screens. Good shrub for moist naturalized areas or areas with poor soils. As with many other plants that occur along stream systems, it is adapted to a wide range of conditions and can tolerate very wet soils, including occasional flooding.