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Products > Verbena rigida
Verbena rigida - Sand Paper Verbena

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  
Image of Verbena rigida
[2nd Image]
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Verbenaceae (Vervains)
Origin: South America
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Purple
Bloomtime: Spring/Fall
Fragrant Flowers: Yes
Synonyms: (Verbena venosa, Glandularia rigida, Hort.)
Height: 1-2 feet
Width: Running
Exposure: Full Sun
Summer Dry: Yes
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 0-10 F
Verbena rigida (Sand Paper Verbena) - An evergreen perennial to 1 to 2 feet tall and spreading wider from underground by rhizomes. It has rough textured 2- to 3-inch-long dark green leaves that have sharp points on the well-spaced lobes along the leaf margin and on leaf tip and with small vivid purple fragrant flowers held in tight clusters on branching panicles from spring through fall - can bloom into winter in mild climates.

Plant in full sun (best) or in partial shade in a well-drained soil. Tolerates heat and dry conditions but also more regular irrigation and is cold hardy to 0 F and useful as a long blooming annual in even colder locations. Cut back hard to the ground after flowering or when looking haggard and it will quickly resprout. Has been a little pesky in some locations as it will spread wide if allowed and has been known to reseed in the garden. The flowers are attractive to hummingbirds and butterflies, but the rough foliage is resistant to predation by deer.

This plant is native to Brazil, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina. It was first described by German botanist Kurt Polycarp Joachim Sprengel in Systema Vegetabilium in 1827 and others have proposed it be included with Verbena bonariensis as Verbena bonariensis var. rigida (Spreng.) Kuntze, Verbena bonariensis var. venosa (Gillies & Hook.) Chodat or Verbena bonariensis forma venosa (Gillies & Hook.) Chodat and it is sometimes listed as Glandularia rigida, but the current name according the Royal Botanic Garden Kew's database remains Verbena rigida. It has also gone under the common names Prairie Verbena, Stiff Verbena, Upright Verbena, Tuberous Vervain, Slender Vervain and Hardy Garden Verbena. In England, where it typically is called the Hardy Garden Verbena it received the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit in 1993. We grew this plant from 2017 until 2020. 

This information about Verbena rigida displayed on this web page is based on research we have conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations we have made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens visited, as well how our crops have performed in containers in the nursery field. Where appropriate, we will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share cultural information that would aid others in growing this plant.