Verbena hastata (Blue Vervain) - photos and description





Look straight down on plant.


Leaf upper-stem in above photo. 

Leaves mid-stem have hastate lobes.

General: Upright plant with stems simple or branching above. Stems square and rough hairy.

Flowers: Flowers showy, light purple growing in long spikes. Flowers grow in a whorl on each spike, the whorls moving up the spike towards the spike tip over time. Flowers tubular, we measured a flower at 4 mm diameter, and a long spike at 9 cm long.

Leaves:  Leaves cauline with short petioles, opposite, lanceolate, with serrate margins. Leaves mid-stem and lower have hastate lobes (basal lobes protruding sideways). The leaf highlighted above had an end leaflet measured at 85 mm long by 27 mm wide; one of its basal lobes was measured at 33 mm long by 11 mm wide. Leaves rough hairy.

Height: Budd's Flora lists height of flower stems to 150 cm. We measured plants to 53 cm tall.

Habitat: Woodlands and river valleys, extreme southeastern Saskatchewan.

Abundance: This plant is very rare, ranked as an S2 (as of 2021) by the Saskatchewan Conservation Data Centre. This is an eastern North American species whose western range ends in south eastern Saskatchewan.

Origin: Native.

When and where photographed: The above photos were taken on August 3rd and 5th, prairie in pasture in the Souris River valley, about 225 km southeast of our home in Regina, SK.

Many thanks to Rebecca who was instrumental in our photographing this rare plant.