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The Plant Guide

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African scurf pea

Psoralea pinnata

sor-AL-ee-ah pin-NAY-tah Audio

This short-lived shrub or small tree with feathery foliage is blanketed in late spring with fragrant, pea-shaped violet blooms with white wings. Though it is native to streamsides, scurf pea doesn’t require extravagant watering and survives occasional drought. When the plants eventually die, they leave ample progeny and straight branches useful for garden stakes. Combine with azaleas and camellias, which bloom at the same time.

Noteworthy CharacteristicsFragrant, profuse bloom. Self-sows. Drought tolerant. Fragrance reminds some people of grape soda.

CarePlant in full sun or part shade and well-drained soil.

PropagationBest by seed.

  • Genus : Psoralea
  • Zones : 10, 11, 9
  • Plant Width : 3 to 6 feet
  • Plant Height : 6 to 10 feet
  • Tolerance : Drought Tolerant
  • Characteristics : Fragrant Flowers, Self Seeds, Showy Foliage
  • Bloom Time : Late Spring, Spring
  • Moisture : Medium Moisture
  • Growth Rate : Moderate
  • Maintenance : Moderate
  • Light : Partial Shade
  • Plant Type : Shrubs
  • Plant Seasonal Interest : Spring Interest
  • Flower Color : White

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