Lupinus perennis is used as foodplants by the caterpillars of several lepidoptera. Among these are the clouded sulphur, eastern tailed blue, gray hairstreak, silvery blue, wild indigo duskywing, frosted elfin (Callophrys irus), the eastern Persius duskywing (Erynnis persius persius), and the rare and endangered Karner blue (Lycaeides melissa samuelis), whose caterpillars feed only on the lupine leaves. Leaves that have been fed on by Karner blues have distinctive transparent areas where the larvae have selectively eaten only the green, fleshy parts.
The lupine has been declining in number and range since the Industrial Revolution. It is estimated that it has declined in number by about 90% since 1900. This decline has been deemed one of the primary causes of the Karner blues' endangerment. The main causes of its decline are thought to be habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, and poor management. Currently it is threatened in Iowa, Maryland, and New Hampshire; it is endangered in Vermont, and is extirpated in Maine. Human development has eliminated a large portion of its viable habitat. Remaining habitat is often fragmented, which is problematic for the lupine because it limits the range over which it can reproduce. Viable lupine habitat is often difficult to maintain because it flourishes after fires and other forms of disturbance. One reason this occurs is that lupine seed coats are so tough that only pressure changes due to rapid heating or abrasion are strong enough to allow water to penetrate and start germination. Moreover, fires, feeding by large ungulates, and mowing can improve habitat quality for established lupines by changing soil quality, vegetative structure, and leaf litter depth.
USA: AL , CT , DC , DE , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KY , LA , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MS , NC , NH , NJ , NY , OH , PA , RI , SC , TX , VA , VT , WI , WV
Canada: NB , ON
USDA HARDINESS ZONES 3-8
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry , Moist
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8) , Circumneutral (pH 6.8-7.2)
Soil Description: Dry, sandy soils.
Conditions Comments: Requires good drainage, but is very adaptable.
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Apr 24, 2020
May 18, 2019
Mar 11, 2019
Fast shipping. Seeds as described.
Mar 10, 2019
Aug 3, 2018