This is another one of my garden favourites, the Lupin. My Dad grew lots of these in his garden when I was a boy. There were all the colours of the rainbow in one border, and the bees buzzed all around them as butterflies fluttered nearby. Those were the best summers I remember from a young age.
Also called the ‘Large-leaved Lupin’, this is a tall, spiked and magnificent flower rising into a spire of delicately formed peaflowers. The blooms come in varied colours of pink, purple, blue, white, yellow and also bicolours. The leaves are also quite spectacular, large and radiating finger-like with 9-17 elongated digits.
It flowers June to August, and is found mainly in gardens, but it has become widely naturalised and can be found growing on roadside verges, embankments, river banks, and many grassy places.
A common and widespread species which was first introduced in the 19th century from the mountainous region of western North America. It is one of the parents in crosses that formed the famous Russell Lupin.
May and July 2012, and July 2011, rear garden, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2011 and 2012.