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Verbena hastata var. hastata (Swamp verbena)
Pyle, Lynn

Verbena hastata var. hastata

Verbena hastata L. var. hastata

Swamp Verbena, Blue Vervain

Verbenaceae (Verbena Family)



USDA Native Status: L48 (N), CAN (N)

Spikes of purple-blue flowers appear on this 3-5 ft meadow plant in mid-summer. Small flowers open on spikes from bottom to top for a long bloom period. Spent flower spikes add ornamental interest.

This species is a member of the verbena family (family Verbenaceae), which includes about 75 genera and 3,000 species of herbs, shrubs, and trees, mostly of tropical and warm temperate regions. Among them, teak is a highly prized furniture wood, and Vervain, Lantana, Lippia or Frog Fruit, and Chase Tree or Vitex are grown as ornamentals.


From the Image Gallery

1 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Biennial
Habit: Herb
Fruit Type: Schizocarp
Size Notes: Up to about 5 feet tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Blue , Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AL , AR , CT , DC , DE , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , ND , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NY , OH , OK , PA , RI , SC , SD , TN , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: BC , MB , NB , NS , ON , PE , QC , SK

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist
Drought Tolerance: Medium
Conditions Comments: Grows in wet meadows in the wild, but will thrive in dry soil.


Use Ornamental: Good plant for sunny meadow, prairie gardens
Use Food: Leaves make a beverage tea. (Kindscher)
Use Medicinal: Amerindians used leaf tea as a female tonic, also for colds, coughs, fevers, bowel complaints, dysentery, stomach cramps, emetic in large doses. Roots considered more active than leaves. (Foster & Duke) Tea of roots to clear up cloudy urine. Dried, powdered flowers used as a snuff to stop nose bleed. Root used as a remedy for fits. (Kindscher)
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Nectar Source: 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.


Propagation Material: Seeds
Description: Prodigious self-seeder. Seeds ripen in late summer, early fall.

Web Reference

Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Verbena hastata var. hastata in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Verbena hastata var. hastata in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Verbena hastata var. hastata


Record Modified: 2023-05-25
Research By: TWC Staff

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