Wild lupine (Lupinus perennis) is a hardy, easy to maintain native plant that also improves the soil quality by fixing nitrogen. It is an important nectar source for bees and butterflies and the only host plants of the endangered Karner Blue Butterfly. Wild lupines prefer sandy soil and are quite happy in ditches and disturbed sites. Lupines do not like to be transplanted.
Note, wild lupine easily hybridizes with ornamental lupine varieties if they are growing nearby. We take extra precautions to prevent hybridization, but it does occur at times. Hybridized seed can come up as a larger plant with pink, purple or white blooms.
Cold, moist stratification and scarification required. Scarify by rubbing seeds with sandpaper to make a small scrape in the seed coat, then mix with moist substrate (vermiculite, perlite or moss). Place in a plastic bag and refrigerate for 6-8 weeks. Sow seed at 1/4 inch depth. Do not let seedling dry out while it is establishing.
Scarify seeds then sow directly outdoors in late fall to overwinter.