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Polemonium reptans L.
Greek Valerian, Jacob's Ladder
Polemoniaceae (Phlox Family)
USDA Symbol: PORE2
USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)
The attractive, pinnately compound leaves and the loose flower clusters of this perennial arise on separate stalks. The stalks are slender and somewhat weak, rising 10-20 in. A smooth, weak-stemmed plant with light blue to purple, bell-shaped flowers in loose clusters.
This attractive wildflower, with its delicate, compound leaves, is sometimes cultivated in eastern gardens.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 20 inches tall.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Blue , Purple
Bloom Time: Apr , May , Jun
DistributionUSA: AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , MA , MD , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SD , TN , VA , VT , WI , WV
Native Distribution: NY to MN, s. to GA & AR
Native Habitat: Moist, deciduous woods; stream banks
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Soil pH: Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Drought Tolerance: Low
Soil Description: Moist, humus-rich soils.
Conditions Comments: Will go dormant in drought conditions.
BenefitConspicuous Flowers: yes
Value to Beneficial InsectsSpecial Value to Native Bees
Special Value to Bumble Bees
This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.
PropagationDescription: Propagate by rootstock division or seed. Divide clumps in early spring or late summer. Sow seeds as they ripen or in very early spring.
Commercially Avail: yes
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.
National Wetland Indicator Status
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Delaware Nature Society - Hockessin, DE
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
First United Methodist Church of Jefferson City - Jefferson City, TN
Mt. Cuba Center - Hockessin, DE
BibliographyBibref 928 - 100 easy-to-grow native plants for Canadian gardens (2005) Johnson, L.; A. Leyerle
Bibref 1294 - The Midwestern Native Garden: Native Alternatives to Nonnative Flowers and Plants An Illustrated Guide (2011) Adelman, Charlotte and Schwartz, Bernard L.
Search More Titles in Bibliography
Web ReferenceWebref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Polemonium reptans in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Polemonium reptans in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Polemonium reptans
MetadataRecord Modified: 2023-02-23
Research By: TWC Staff