Common Name false indigo
Origin North America
Moisture wet to dry
Amorpha fruticosa is a species of flowering plant in the legume family (Fabaceae) known by several common names, including desert false indigo, false indigo-bush, and bastard indigobush. It is found wild in most of the contiguous United States, southeastern Canada, and northern Mexico, but it is probably naturalized in the northeastern and northwestern portion of its current range. The species is also present as an introduced species in Europe, Asia, and other continents.
A. fruticosa grows as a glandular, thornless shrub which can reach 5 or 6 meters in height and spread to twice that in width. The fruit is a legume pod containing one or two seeds.
Plants have an extensive root system and are also fairly wind tolerant, they can be planted as a windbreak and also to prevent soil erosion. Resinous pustules on the plant contain 'amorpha', a contact and stomachic insecticide that also acts as an insect repellent. The stems are used as bedding. The plant contains some indigo pigment and can be used to make a blue dye. Unfortunately, the pigment is only present in very small quantities, there is not enough to harvest commercially.
A hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -25C, it will only be appropriate for certain regions of Sweden. A polymorphic species, there are many named forms. The flowers have a vanilla perfume. Plants resent root disturbance, they should be planted out into their final positions whilst small. False Indigo is a Nitrogen fixer. Other uses have included;
Bedding, Dye, Insecticide, Oil, Repellent, Shelterbelt, Soil stabilization