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The Plant Guide

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Tall Verbena

Verbena bonariensis

ver-BEE-nah bon-ar-ee-EN-sis Audio

This outstanding annual or perennial deserves its popularity. It makes an architectural statement with slender, willowy stems that stand up to 6 feet tall and do not need staking. It then branches out widely near the top where rich lilac-purple flower clusters stand alone, as if they are floating. This Verbena makes a great see-through plant.

Noteworthy CharacteristicsThis genus originates from South America, occurring in open, sunny sites. The flowers are long-blooming. Verbenas are excellent for annual borders and mixed herbaceous borders.

CareProvide moist, well-drained soil in full sun.

PropagationSow seed in autumn or early spring at 64-70°F. Divide in spring or take cuttings anytime.

ProblemsWhiteflies, aphids, slugs, snails, scale insects, spider mites, powdery mildew, Septoria leaf spot, rust.

  • Genus : Verbena
  • Plant Width : 1 to 3 feet
  • Zones : 10, 7, 8, 9
  • Plant Height : 3 to 6 feet
  • Tolerance : Drought Tolerant, Frost Tolerant
  • Bloom Time : Early Fall, Late Summer, Summer
  • Growth Rate : Fast
  • Light : Full Sun
  • Maintenance : Low
  • Moisture : Medium Moisture
  • Plant Type : Perennials
  • Characteristics : Self Seeds
  • Plant Seasonal Interest : Summer Interest
View Comments


  1. pattilinn 02/25/2017

    Do I cut all the branches of verbena bonariensis to the ground in the spring or leave the ones that are remaining from last season?

    1. LaureenMT 04/18/2017

      I cut them. The plant blooms on new growth. I kept a few stubs from the old stems just to avoid disturbing the roots and crown of the plant. It's growing nicely for me in Virginia!

      1. user-7008692 06/26/2017

        Going bananas here in the middle of Alaska!

  2. pattilinn 04/18/2017

    Thank you so much for the reply! Excited to see how it does this year!

    1. LaureenMT 06/26/2017

      Let us know! The pollinators love my blooms - butterflies, bees, and more!

  3. GeorgiaGibbs 07/14/2017

    I planted one plant years ago and it has self seeded and popped up all over the garden. Butterflies and hummingbirds both seem to be fans. I am in Marin, Californian.

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