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How to Grow Texas Bluebonnet – Lupinus

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Texas Bluebonnet, Lupinus texensis, bears blue, pealike flowers in midsummer. Flowers are borne on long, graceful spikes from 1 to 3 feet tall. Bluebonnets are a good fit for meadows and long drives. They quickly reseed and naturalize.

Texas Bluebonnets
Texas Bluebonnets

Get to know Texas Bluebonnet

  • Plant type: Cool-season annual
  • Growing Zones and range: 2-11
  • Hardiness: Best in cool weather
  • Height and width: 10” to 12” tall and wide
  • Flowers: Pea-like blooms
  • Bloom time: Spring and summer
  • Uses: Wildflower gardens, meadows, along roads
  • Common name: Texas Bluebonnet
  • Botanical name: Lupinus texensis
  • Origin: Grasslands North America

Where to plant Texas Bluebonnet

  • Plant Texas bluebonnets in full sun to light shade.
  • Texas bluebonnets will grow in average to poor soil.
Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) flower blooming in springtime.
Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis)

When to plant Texas Bluebonnet

  • Sow Texas bluebonnet sees indoors 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost in spring in Zones2-6. Set plants in the garden when all danger of frost has passed. In Zones 7-11 sow seeds outdoors in the fall.

Planting and spacing Texas Bluebonnet

  • Space Texas bluebonnets 10 to 12 inches apart. Bluebonnets will not bloom well if crowded.

How to water and feed Texas Bluebonnet

  • Texas bluebonnets need moderate water; keep the soil evenly moist.
  • Fertilize Texas bluebonnets lightly in spring if at all.

Texas Bluebonnet care

  • Texas bluebonnets easily reseed.

Texas Bluebonnet pests and diseases

  • Fungal and bacterial spots, downy mildew, powdery mildew, rust, stem rot, and damping off can occur.
Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) flower blooming in springtime.
Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) flower blooming in springtime.

Texas Bluebonnet propagation

  • Sow seed in spring or autumn. Soak seed for 24 hours before sowing.
  • Lupinus texensis easily reseeds.

Texas Bluebonnet variety to grow

Lupinus texensis erect to spreading, bushy annual, mid-green leaves are hairy beneath; pea-like, deep blue to blue purple flowers 1/2 inch across are borne in compact, crowded racemes; grows to 12 inches (30cm) tall.

Written by Stephen Albert

Stephen Albert is a horticulturist, master gardener, and certified nurseryman who has taught at the University of California for more than 25 years. He holds graduate degrees from the University of California and the University of Iowa. His books include Vegetable Garden Grower’s Guide, Vegetable Garden Almanac & Planner, Tomato Grower’s Answer Book, and Kitchen Garden Grower’s Guide. His Vegetable Garden Grower’s Masterclass is available online. has more than 10 million visitors each year.

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