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Amorpha nana (Dwarf false indigo) | NPIN

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Amorpha nana (Dwarf false indigo)
Wasowski, Sally and Andy

Amorpha nana

Dwarf false indigo, Fragrant indigo-bush, Fragrant false indigo, Dwarf wild indigo

Fabaceae (Pea Family)

USDA Symbol: amna

USDA Native Status:

Fragrant indigo-bush is a low-growing shrub, 1-3 ft. tall. Its finely textured, pinnately compound foliage gives a cloud-like appearance. Dense, terminal racemes of purple, pea-like flowers with showy, orange anthers are showcased against the bright-green leaflets.

The genus name, from the Greek amorphos (formless or deformed), alludes to the fact that the flower, with only a single petal (the banner or standard), is unlike the typical pea flowers of the family.


Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate
Leaf Complexity: Pinnate
Size Class: 1-3 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Purple
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul


USA: CO , IA , KS , MN , ND , NE , NM , OK , SD
Canada: MB
Native Distribution: S. Man. to IA, w. to Sask. & NM
Native Habitat: Dry prairies; rocky hillsides

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Soil Description: Rocky or sandy soils.


Conspicuous Flowers: yes

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.


Description: Propagation is possible by seed. Seedlings are slow-growing.
Seed Collection: Extraction of seeds from the pod is not necessary as the pods do not inhibit germination.
Seed Treatment: If seeds are stored, a 10-minute, hot water soak will improve germination. Moist stratification for three weeks at 40 degrees may also improve germination.
Commercially Avail: yes

Recommended Species Lists

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Additional resources

USDA: Find Amorpha nana in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Amorpha nana in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Amorpha nana


Record Modified: 2009-02-19
Research By: TWC Staff

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