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Justicia americana

American water-willow add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun

Water Use: high

Soil Moisture: wet

Soil Description: loam, clay, sand

Height: 1'-3'

Bloom Time: May, June, July, August, September

Bloom Color: white, pink

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Additional Tags: attracts bees, attracts butterflies, attracts hummingbirds, colonizing, deer resistant, emergent, naturalizing, ornamental foliage, pond margin plant, stream margin plant, water garden plant, wetland plant

Justicia americana (American water-willow)
  • Justicia americana (American water-willow)
  • Justicia americana (American water-willow)
  • Justicia americana (American water-willow)

Pricing & Availability

Description

Justicia americana

Also known as:

American water-willow

,

Scientific Synonyms:

Dianthera americana, Dianthera americana var. subcoriacea, Justicia americana var. subcoriacea, Justicia mortuifluminis, Justicia umbratilis

Description

Justicia americana is a herbaceous aquatic perennial that typically grows to a height of 3'. It is light green in color, with angular stems and lance-shaped opposite leaves that are up to 6" long. Flowering stems develop from the leaf axils on the upper part of the plant, and bear clusters of overlapping individual flowers. These flowers are about 3/4" across, white, with distinctive intricate purple markings on the lower lobe. The blooming period is extensive, beginning in spring and lasting until fall.

Cultivation

American water-willow is a species that almost always occurs in wetlands. It has a rhizomatous root system that is very effective in stabilizing water margins and stream banks. It is ideal for areas where the water levels fluctuate and can establish in saturated soil as well shallow water up to 12" deep. It will tolerate moderate amounts of shade, but its preference is full sun. This species will colonize, without being aggressive, and can be grown as a medium-size transitional plant for pond or stream margins, or kept potted as an ornamental for smaller water features. Zones 4-10

Propagation

Root division or seed.

Additional Notes

The common name water-willow is a reference to the species' leaves that resemble those of willows (Salix spp.), however they are completely unrelated.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MD, MI, MO, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Endangered: IA
  • Threatened: MI

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Scrophulariales
Family Acanthaceae Acanthus family
Genus Justicia water-willow
Species Justicia americana American water-willow