Name: Lespedeza thunbergii ‘Gibraltar’ aka Gibraltar bush clover
Type of Plant: A perennial in most regions, this plant looks like a shrub! Hardy in zones 5 to 9, this fall-flowering plant will knock your socks off in September and October with a fountain of purple flowers! Grow this perennial in full to part-sun.
Why I Love This: This plant is so dramatic and doesn’t require much care other than cutting the stems down to the ground after a hard frost. It is the perfect plant for a slope or to drape over a wall so that the flowers and form can be fully appreciated when it comes into bloom.
A Word to the Wise: This Lespedeza grows wide. Really wide. In one summer it goes from ground level to five feet tall and ten to twelve feet wide. That’s right: ten to twelve feet wide! So give it the space it needs…it’s the perfect plant to surround with spring-flowering bulbs since the Lespedeza’s growth will cover those as they are finished blooming. Other than being realistic about how large the plant will grow it really requires no special care.