Plant Encyclopedia


Amorpha canescens

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Leadplant with green fuzzy leaves and purple bell-shaped flowers

Discover More Information On Leadplant

Leadplant is a small, deciduous shrub that is most recognizable by its soft, feathery leaves and tiny bluish-purple flowers. Bursting with nectar, it’s a popular choice for those who like to attract bees, butterflies, and ladybugs to their gardens. In the heart of summer, this shrub is in full bloom—bringing a pop of rich color to any landscape. Plus, it’s a very tough plant that requires little maintenance throughout the year.

Plant Attributes

The tiny, thick hairs dotting the leaves of this shrub give it a soft, silvery gray appearance from afar while its small flowers grow in dense clusters along spikes located at the top of this low-lying, spreading shrub. In the summer months, both the leaves and the flowers are vibrant in color, but in the Fall they slowly transform into a dusty natural hue to fit in with the season. While the Leadplant does prefer plenty of bright sunshine throughout the day, it is also tolerant of shade and high winds making it a more adaptable choice for various locations.

Landscape Use

Planting & Care

Leadplant is a low-growing, perennial shrub that can easily be cultivated in USDA hardiness zones 2 through 9. It prefers well-drained silty soil or dry sandy soil but can also survive in clay, gravely or rocky soil as well. Native to the high plains, Leadplant thrives in dry climates and has a deep tap root to be very drought-tolerant.

Because Leadplant is a member of the legume family, adding fertilizer to the soil is unnecessary as this shrub can convert nitrogen gas from the air and add it to the soil on its own. Regular watering the entire first season after it’s planted is best; however, less frequent watering is recommended as the shrub matures.

Maintenance Notes

Grow in any well-drained, sandy or rocky soil. Tolerates drought, strong winds, moderate grazing and fire.

Additional Information

Interested in



Leadplant is a beautiful yet practical addition to any landscape, large or small. With its compact size, it can easily fit among a variety of other plants while still adding a very noticeable visual element to any environment.

If you’re interested in utilizing Leadplant in your next landscape design, reach out to our team at Arbor Valley by filling in our contact form. We can answer any questions you may have, give you advice on making the most out of any outdoor space, and check our current inventory.

Plant Features

  • A small, rounded deciduous shrub
  • Feathery leaves and purple flower spikes
  • Native to prairies, bluffs, meadows, and shrublands
  • Drought and shade tolerant
  • Fire
  • Moderate grazing
Plant Needs
  • Light Requirement: Sun
  • Maintenance Category: Easy
  • Bloom Time: Summer
  • Hardiness Zones: 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Water Category: Low
  • Soil Fertility Requirement: Loamy, sandy, or rocky soil
  • Soil pH Category: Alkaline, neutral
  • Ground cover
  • Ornamental
  • Tea

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