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Products > Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly'
Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly' - Butterfly Pea Shrub
Image of Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly'
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Polygalaceae (Milkworts)
Origin: South Africa (Africa)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Purple
Bloomtime: Year-round
Synonyms: [P. oppositifolia, 'Mariposa']
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly' (Sweet Pea Shrub) - A compact shrub to almost 3 feet tall with a rounded habit. It is has gray-green foliage that is slightly rounder than Polygala x dalmaisiana. It is very free flowering with the purple pea-like flowers, composed of two winged petals surrounding a whitish purple lacy crest, found on the plant nearly year-round. Plant in full sun or part shade with regular to little irrigation. Hardy to 15-20 F. Polygala fruticosa is a coastal species that can even be found within the splash zone. This would make this a good candidate for beachside plantings. It also makes a good cut flower and lasts well in arrangements. We received our stock plant as Polygala 'Petite Butterfly' from Robert Abe of Chia Nursery in Carpinteria, California, who got it from Malanseuns Pleasure Plants in South Africa. Malanseuns Pleasure Plants now lists this plant as Polygala fruticosa 'Sugar Baby' var. Butterfly Petite and has applied for a trademark in South Africa for the Sugar Baby name. It is also growin ing the nursery trade as Polygala myrtifolia 'Mariposa' - mariposa is the Spanish word for butterfly. The name Polygala is Latin from the Greek word 'polugalon' for "much milk" because of the belief that cows grazing on milkwort increased their milk production. We have grown this plant since 2004 but are discontinuing this plant in favor of Polygala 'Alta Mariposa' which is similar but a stronger growing plant with larger leaves.  The information about Polygala fruticosa 'Petite Butterfly' displayed on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources we consider reliable. We will also relate those observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery gardens and in other gardens that we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments we receive from others and welcome hearing from anyone who has additional information, particularly when they share cultural information that would aid others in growing it.