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Partridge pea
Chamaecrista fasciculata

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

General Landscape Uses: Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations. Also wildflower and butterfly gardens.

Ecological Restoration Notes: An occasional understory herb in pinelands and coastal uplands.

Availability: Grown by one or two native plant nurseries in South Florida.

Description: Medium annual herbaceous wildflower.

Dimensions: Typically 1-3 feet in height. Sometimes as broad as tall.

Growth Rate: Fast. An annual or short-lived perennial.

Range: Widespread in North America south to Miami-Dade County and the Monroe County mainland.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes from South Florida north to southern Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Pasco counties.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations from the Monroe County Keys north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Pinelands and coastal uplands.

Soils: Moist, well-drained sandy soils, without humus.

Nutritional Requirements: Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Moderate; grows near salt water, but is protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.

Drought Tolerance: High; does not require any supplemental water once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: Yellow petals; yellow anthers.

Flower Characteristics: Showy.

Flowering Season: Spring-summer.

Fruit: Flat pod (legume).

Wildlife and Ecology: Provides food for birds. Larval host plant for ceraunus blue (Hemiargus ceraunus), cloudless sulphur (Phoebis sennae), little yellow (Eurema lisa) and gray hairstreak (Strymon melinus) butterflies. Attracts bee pollinators.

Horticultural Notes: Can be grown from seed. Plant in a pot with 2" or more of potting soil and spinkle soil over seeds to just cover them. Place in full sun or light shade. Keep moist.

Comments: Spreads readily from seed in the garden. In Miami-Dade County, distinguished from Deering partridge pea (C. deeringiana) by its yellow (vs. red) anthers. See also the Florida Wildflower Foundation's Flower Friday page.

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

Copyright by: George D. Gann

Copyright by: Jay Horn via iNaturalist

Copyright by: Jay Horn via iNaturalist

Copyright by: Jay Horn via iNaturalist

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Other data on Chamaecrista fasciculata available from:

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