Butterfly Garden Plant Chamaecrista fasciculata Partridge Pea
Other common names for this plant include Showy Partridge Pea, Sensitive Plant, Sleepingplant, Sleeping Pea
Native from southern Florida to northern Minnesota, Partridge Pea looks best when planted in groups and is easy to include in most medium to large size gardens. A short-lived perennial that is grown as an annual, Partridge Pea has bright yellow flowers that incorporate easily into many garden border combinations. Try pairing with liatris for contrasting colors and plant forms.
Partridge Pea also provides pollen for a number of other insects and birds relish the seed pods that follow the flowers.
Read more about the use of Partridge Pea for butterfly gardening in a reprint of an article from Butterfly Gardener magazine: Caterpillar Food Plant: Partridge Pea
Importance as a butterfly nectar source:
A good nectar source that also attracts many pollinators in addition to butterflies.
Importance as a caterpillar food source:
Cloudless Sulphur, Sleepy Orange, and Little Yellow caterpillars all use Partridge Pea as a food source. All three of these butterflies range widely over the southern U.S., with Little Yellow’s range being restricted eastward.
Partridge Pea is also used as a food source by Ceraunus Blue caterpillars which are common in far southern regions, usually late in the summer; found all year long in southern Florida and the Lower Rio Grande Valley, Texas.
Gray Hairstreak caterpillars also include Partridge Pea as a caterpillar food plant in addition to countless other plants.
|USDA Hardiness Zone||Plant annually|
|Bloom Period||Summer to fall|
|Plant Height||24 to 40 inches|
|Plant Spread||18 inches|
|Light Exposure||Full to part sun|
|Soil Moisture||Medium to dry|
Plant rating scale ranges from 0 to 3. Plants rating 3 are the most useful for butterfly gardens. For more details on the ratings, see Native Plant Ratings